These Vegas Street Lights Are Powered by Footsteps
When it comes to energy-sucking utilities, street lights have no equal. The pavement-illuminating fixtures are said to eat up $40 billion in costs worldwide each year, releasing 100 million tons of CO2 to make for a giant-sized carbon footprint. This past week, clean tech start-up EnGoPlanet and the city of Las Vegas teamed up to present a possible solution.
Four Smart Street Lights located in Boulder Plaza are powered by both solar energy and the kinetic energy of passersby, collecting power from footsteps that travel across energy-harvesting pads installed on the pavement. The lamps also double as a Wi-Fi charging station with a wireless charging pad available to the public.
While the pressure produced by a single footstep varies, EnGoPlanet estimates that they can harness between 4 and 8 watts whenever a shoe passes over their pad. The company’s eventual hope is to bring this kind of low-resource energy to impoverished areas of the world, where grid power is not in plentiful supply. The company currently has a fundraising campaign to target 10 areas of Africa via Indiegogo.