In our changing world of hybrid cars, we sometimes don't see the big picture. Well, Assaf Biderman, a professor and Associate Director of MIT's Senseable City Lab has looked past the electric hybrid cars, and has invented the Copenhagen Wheel.
This revolutionary wheel looks like an ordinary bicycle wheel, but it acts like a wheel on steroids. To install it on an ordinary bike, simply remove the rear wheel and bolt the Copenhagen Wheel into place. The enclosed center of the wheel is manufactured so that kinetic energy from physically peddling the bike, is stored in a battery inside the wheels center, to be used when you need it.
Electric bikes have been around awhile now, but most must be plugged in to be charged. With this bike, you charge it by simply riding it, thus saving on your electric bill and also promoting more green living by not having to use commercial electricity to recharge the battery.
Assaf Biderman has this to say about the wheel. "Our goal with the Copenhagen Wheel is to promote cycling by expanding the range of distance people can cover and by making the riding experience smoother. When long distance and steep hills are no longer barriers to comfortable cycling, many cities can become more bicycle-friendly.
The bike wheel is an extension of your personal mobile device. Controlled through your smart phone, the wheel recognizes you as you approach. While you ride, you can switch gears and motor modes using your phone, and receive real-time alerts automatically.
The Wheel also has a smart security system: if someone rides away with it, the Wheel goes into a mode where the brake regenerates the maximum amount of power and sends you a text message with its location. So in the worst case, the thief will have fully charged your batteries before you get back your bike.
As bikers collect and share air quality data, cycling becomes more than a clean mode of transport. It opens yet another door for citizens to participate in governance and in the maintenance of public resources. Bicycles are very efficient machines. Rather than reinventing them, we're introducing a simple technological enhancement that allows any bike to become a smart and responsive hybrid"
For more information on this product, watch the video, and visit The Copenhagen Wheel. Also, to subscribe to these free articles by Gerry Glenn Jones, click on the subscribe link near the top of this page. You will be notified by email each time a new article is published. In the meantime, "Keep Living Green!"