In shape or not, pedaling up a steep or long hill can knock the wind out of most of us. That is one reason, says designer Chen Chun Tung, we need bikes like the Wind-Solar Energy Bike. The design, he says, converts and stores wind, solar, and shock energy, along with muscle power into electricity so it can be used during tough climbs, or when just lazy. Four devices (an adjustable solar energy plane, a spoiler, the front fork, and front and back wheels) harness energy and store it in a battery, says Tung.
The adjustable solar energy plane mounts below the main frame but can be unfolded and mounted on a support over the rear wheel to expose more cells to the sun. The spoiler, fixed below the handlebars, combines a solar-cell coating and wind-driven generators. The aerodynamics of the spoiler is said to provide some lift, presumably to reduce rolling friction. And the spoiler also sports a removable headlight that can double as a flashlight.
A coil and magnet in each front-fork tine generates a current as the fork compresses and extends over bumps. The rider’s weight causes some oscillations, which passes the magnetic field over and off the coil, generating a current. Lastly, motor-generators are built into the front and back wheels.
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