Remarkable new technology allowing rail passengers to generate green energy on their journey has been installed at a London Northwestern Railway (LNR) station.
Leighton Buzzard, in Bedfordshire, has become the first transport hub in the country to receive the Pavegen system following a partnership with Central Bedfordshire Council.
The system involves the installation of durable floor tiles which convert the kinetic energy generated by passengers’ footsteps to small amounts of electricity. The technology is in use now and is powering a nearby display screen as well as USB charging points on nearby benches.
Lawrence Bowman, customer experience director for LNR, said: “Embracing new technologies is a vital part of any industry which is why we are delighted that Leighton Buzzard has been chosen as the site for this exciting pilot scheme.
“I know our customers will embrace this new technology and with more people travelling we will see more and more energy generated at the station in coming months and years.”
The project has been funded by the Department for Transport through the £22.9m ADEPT SMART Places Live Labs Programme, which is funding technological pilot schemes across the country.
Andrew Selous MP, whose South West Bedfordshire constituency includes Leighton Buzzard, said: “I like the fact this concept engages people, involves exercise and is creating clean electricity all the time. I think that connection between people and energy created through movement is a really good join up.”
Laurence Kemball-Cook, from Pavegen, said: “We are very proud to be part of this pilot project and we are excited at the prospect of helping to drive a national rollout to create a greener, more sustainable transport network for the UK.
“We have evolved our product to create a new and engaging mobile app platform to create a way for transport hubs to reward their passengers for the footsteps they use, potentially encouraging footfall and getting people back to retail, leisure, or hospitality via our train stations.”
Photo and video credit: West Midlands Trains