Sometimes I think it’s ridiculous that people go to the gym and use up tons of energy on the elliptical when there’s a beautiful, walkable earth all around us. (Note: I am guilty of choosing the elliptical over beautiful, walkable earth). But imagine if going to the gym was actually green-conscious? A new system installed in 40 exercise machines at Yale’s Payne Whitney Gymnasium allow gym goers to charget their iPhones, iPods, BlackBerries, and other portable devices through the energy created by their workouts.
Hur Koser, mastermind behind this project, shares with The Yale Bulletin a super fun fact: If every one of the 250 million cell phone users in the United States charged their phones for on hour each day through exercise, rather than by plugging them into traditional power outlets, the energy savings would totaly upwards of 520 megawatts–the equivalent amount produced by several doxen coal-burning plants.
Another fun fact: this idea began as the senior project of former engineering student Henrique Rocka, who then worked with Koser to design and build the devices from scratch.
Undergrads can make a difference. Wooo!