Experts at Iberdrola, a global renewable energy business, teamed with students from Junia, French school of science and engineering, to turn six turnstiles at Paris’s Miromesnil Métro station into “mini turbines” that leverage the kinetic energy of people passing through them to create power.
The goal was to turn “very small movement into continuous energy,” according to an Iberdrola video clip.
An Iberdrola video of the operation shows the turbine-themed blade design the engineering students developed.
The turnstile arms, made using biodegradable corn starch, are seen spinning as each person passes through them, generating more than 2,000 watts a day. If deployed across the underground system, the turnstiles could power an entire line, per the clip.
It’s part of Iberdrola’s efforts to call out air pollution through a “turn to green” campaign. During the campaign, the turnstiles powered nearby screens that showed messages highlighting renewable energy.
Many climate scientists agree that to avoid catastrophe, the world’s average temperature “should not exceed” what it was from 1850-1900 (pre-industrialization) “by more than 2.7-degrees Fahrenheit,” MIT reported.
But there is a 66% chance that the mark will be surpassed during one of the next five years, according to the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), and it’s “increasing with time.”
That’s why Iberdrola’s leader said the company is pushing the renewable energy message. The Paris turnstile project is a vision of how cleaner power can be created, even in mundane daily activity.
“[W]e want to continue driving the transition toward an energy system based on renewable energy, grids, and storage to build a more sustainable … society, and a more habitable planet for new generations,” Iberdrola Executive Chairman Ignacio S. Galán said on the company’s website.
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