Dancing to power London nightclub
Boogie for a better world
People have done all sorts of things to promote eco-friendliness in the past. But how about boogie-ing your way to a cleaner climate? Now you can, thanks to Dancefloor Power.
The concept is pretty simple: a special dancefloor is used that’s capable of transforming your dancing – however bad it is – into power that can be used to run everything from the disco ball to the DJ’s decks.
Dancefloor Power is based on the principle of piezoelectricity – the ability of certain materials to generate an electric potential when they're put under pressure. Rows of springs are hidden beneath the dancefloor and as disco divas pound away, the floor rises and sinks to squash small crystal blocks that generate electricity. This current’s then fed into batteries for use elsewhere.
Andrew Charalambous, one of the minds behind Dancefloor Power, said that “loads of clubbers dancing vigorously” have the potential to “provide 60 per cent of the club's energy needs”.
The UK’s first nightclub to feature Dancefloor Power - Surya - opened last night in London. Eco-dancers are served drinks in polycarbon cups and use urinals flushed with air.
Customers who can demonstrate that they travelled to the venue by foot, cycle or public transport get in for free. So don your cycle-clips - your name will definitely be on the list.
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@Niel: Schoolhouse Rock's "Electricity", of course.
@Ben: I'm not so sure many club kids would notice that they are burning more Kcal per hour on a piezo- floor than on a standard dance floor (or on the bare concrete "dance floor" sported by so many fine establishments); after a drink or two, the odds are even slimmer. To put it another way: if the kids are gonna dance anyway, why not harvest some of that energy?
@various: (a) This setup would ensure an almost- constant stream of >= 100 bpm all evening, yes? No boring slow songs unless management determines that they are losing more in bar sales than they are "making" in saved electric costs, right? HUZZAH! (b) I'm surprised that no gyms have wired the treadmills, elliptical trainers, stationary bikes, &c to generators in order to power at least the lights and teevees.
This is MUCH LESS GREEN than just using the mains!
Here is why; Any piezoelectric floor works by increasing the resistance to movement, much as waling on a rubber floor would do. So, it makes electricity at the expense of more energy generated by the muscles. Muscle energy comes, inefficiently from food. Food comes through a chain that includes chemical fertilizers, tractor petrol, transport fuel, processing fuel, the lights in the store, the fuel for the car you went shopping with, the gas for the stove, and the electricity for the dishwasher after.
This is much less efficient in an overall way than just switching on the mains and using some good wind or nuclear-generated current!!!
So essentially they want people to jump around & provide them with free leccy. I'm not dancing till I get paid.
"What will they do at the start of the night, when noone wants to be 1st on the dancefloor?"
Most of the time when I have been in nightclubs early, there have been a couple of fat chicks who have been drinking since midday dancing round their handbags.
I always wondered what they were doing - and now we know.
I like these type of ideas
They could also measure the current, which could decide on the next track, or influence some tripatron style graphic wall.
Or have power dance offs, the winner decided by who can generate the most leccy.
Dual using power saving or creating devices is the way to do it, make it more fun and make it more meaningful. Overtime it increases innovation, understanding of these devices, and reduces production costs.
Oh, they will be supplying to or taking from the grid, that is how these things work, so the entire club is not dependent on people dancing for its power.
Gyms are an obvious one, and really most workout equipment should be setup to supply back.