Human Power To Light Up 2009 New Year Sign
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The 2009 sign that will light up Times Square on New Year's will be powered entirely by humans.
More specifically, the energy will be built up and saved up throughout the month of December by anyone interested in donating a few minutes or hours of pedaling at the Duracell Power Lodge in Times Square.
"All the energy that's created from these snomobikes is going to be stored in these Duracell batteries and then we're going to release that at the moment the new year occurs and light up the 2009 sign with that energy," explains Rick June of Duracell. "We're going to need about 230 hours of cumulative power, which we're going to get very easily from the 400,000 people we expect to sit on these bikes throughout the month of December. There are actually four battery cells; each battery cell is going to light each number on the 2009 sign."
With those 230 hours of pedal power, the sign is expected to stay lit for about 10-15 minutes. It could be longer, depending the amount of sweat equity New Yorkers and tourists decide to deposit.
While Duracell says it has no immediate plans to mass produce this technology things so you could, say, be at home getting exercise while charging your portable devices or generating power for your entire home overall, it says it is constantly looking for ways to make energy greener and more portable.
"Power can be generated in a variety of ways," says June. "Just you and I create kinetic energy just standing around and over time we're going to be looking for many more sources of how to find power, collect it, and release it."
For now though, the goal is just finding enough people committed enough