Kinetic tiles and solar panels are ready to power up mobile devices for people on the go thanks to something called the EnGo charging station. The technology involves a combination of kinetic tiles and solar panels. The tiles are designed to harvest energy from footsteps.
"It makes sense, really, to place something like the EnGo charging station in areas where there is plenty of foot traffic," commented Ubergizmo. The EnGo station, from the New York-based Volta Group, is, as the company said, being powered by two simple things: the sun and your footsteps. How does it work? Each station is equipped with solar panels and kinetic energy tiles. Each time someone walks over the tile, renewable energy is produced which goes directly to EnGo. With additional energy from the sun through the solar panels, EnGo is to provide a charge for almost all portable gadgets. EnGo offers wireless charging as well; one places the device on a pad and charging begins. What's more, EnGo is serving as a free Wi-Fi hotspot.
The EnGo includes installed chargers to fit phones and tablets, two USB charge ports, and two wireless charging pads. The designers also provided an emergency button that dials directly to help. The charging station started installation this month at the main campus of Webster University in St. Louis. This is the first EnGo mobile device powering station installed in the United States, according to the Webster University report. The school station can recharge up to 14 mobile devices simultaneously at the East Academic Building. Branko Zivkovic, co-founder of Volta Group, is a Webster alumnus. According to the university news site, the EnGo station comes equipped with 10 cables that cover most models of cell phones and tablets, USB ports and the wireless charging pads. The station, along with the cost of installation and customizing the unit to match the University's logo, will cost about $20,000, said the report.
Volta Group, meanwhile announced this month that its Portable EnGo Charging Station will be a part of the AT&T Fan Zone Tour, to last for 11 weeks and to visit 11 U.S. cities.
Petar Mirovic, chief executive officer of Volta Group, noted the station not only offers people convenience but also supports raising awareness about the environment. "The EnGo Charging Station provides free recharging and also serves as an educational tool with the main goal to motivate people to become more aware how their actions affect the planet, while also increasing their awareness about importance of using renewable energy sources. We cannot hope to create a sustainable culture with any but sustainable-oriented people."