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Power Output of Healthier Americans: 3650 gWh/year

Using muscles to power our lives is not a new idea. In fact, it's a really really old idea. But that doesn't mean it's not a good idea.

Especially since there's probably a million people trying to burn off calories on treadmills all over the world at this very moment. And all those calories they're burning are pretty much going to waste.

Well, almost all. There are actually a couple of gyms across  the world that are converting those burned kilocalories into usable kilowatts. TreeHugger recently wrote about the "California Gym" in Hong Kong, which uses juice generated from people running on treadmills to power the establishment's lights.

But can this really help? Is it worth attaching generators to millions of treadmills and pfizer cialis uk elliptical machines all over the world?

I think it may be time for some quick calculations.
50 watts per adult * 200 million adults in America * 1 hour of exercise per day * 1 billion watts per gigawatt * 365 days per year = 3650 gigawatt hours per year!

Solving the obesity epidemic and the energy crisis at the same time. That's what I'm talkin' about!

The added cost to the treadmills would likely be a lot less than putting solar panels all over the roof of the gym and the power would be generated exactly when the establishment needs it. I can't imagine this wouldn't pay for itself relatively quickly.

See also:
-Turnstyle Power-
-Pedal Powered Laptop-
-When You Move...It's Electric-
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Comments (15)Add Comment
Wierd Calculation
written by Mitch, June 27, 2007
50 watts per adult * 200 million adults in America * 1 hour of exercise per day * 1 billion watts per gigawatt * 365 days per year = 3650 gigawatt hours per year!

This is wrong. Yes there are 1billion Watts in a GW, but you used it incorrectly in your conversion.

50 watts/adult * 200 million adults * 1 hour/day * 356 days/year = 10,000 Watt*hours, not 3650 GW*hrs

If you want to convert that into GW, then multiply by 1GW/1,000,000,000 W
Re: Wierd Calculation
written by Mitch, June 27, 2007
My mistake, it's 3,650,000 Watt*hours, not ten thousand, but that's still no where near 3650 GW*hrs.
written by Hank, June 27, 2007
I'm pretty sure I'm right. You seem to be punching in 200 adults instead of wow)) levitra attorneys 200,000,000 adults.
written by Michael Pereckas, June 27, 2007
You divide rather than multiply by one billion to go from watt-hours to gigawatt-hours, which is what you evidently actually did. The number looks big until you see that US annual electricity generation is something like 4 million gigawatt-hours, more than a thousand times that amount. It still feels like the power ought to be useful, but a generator of non-negligible efficiency of such low power and running from such a low-speed input is enter site levitra buylevitra onlin apparently harder than it sounds. In my case, I use the power from pedaling to...propel the bicycle down the road, toward my destination. Maybe a more practical idea.
written by Gordon Foat, June 27, 2007
It's just a matter of time before we start selling our own energy to the GYM!
Keep eyes on
translation in Watts
written by Arnaud, June 27, 2007
The calculations are correct, but why the soft viagra weird unit "gWh/year" ? Why not just use Watts instead?

3650 "gWh/year" = 0.4 GW
or 400 MW
which is less than one nuclear plant.

By the way, Giga is written "G", not "g".
"g" means gram.
Exercise bike analysis
written by Jason Olshefsky, June 29, 2007
I recently posted this to tramadol 10mb a mailing list I'm on when someone brought up the same idea:

Let's say you can get 60%
efficiency out of an exercise bike. For kicks, let's assume you've got
a steady stream of people who are out for a good hard workout, and
their average output is 200 watts; the average person can output about
120 watts (about 1/6 horsepower) for long periods of time (more than an
hour or two) so 200 watts would be a hard ride -- compare the output to
the performance of link for you generic levitra next day delivery a scooter with a 200-watt motor. Anyway, that gives
you 120 watts of electricity to work with.

So let's say your gym is open such that the bikes get continuous use
for about 40 hours a week -- 8 hours a day for 5 days. Each week you'd
be able to generate 40 hours * 120 watts = 4800 watt-hours of
electricity. If electricity costs about $0.15/kilowatt-hour (that is,
$0.15 per 1000 watt-hours) then you'd generate about $0.72 per week in
electricity for each bike. So if you wanted to break even in 5 years,
the retrofit on the exercise bike would need to be less than $0.72/week
* 52 weeks/year * 5 years = $187.20.

Thus, I guess it's a plausible model to work from.

Another way to only here mail order viagra look at the money side of things is to consider paying
people to pedal-for-power. In an 8-hour day producing 120
watts-per-hour (again, assuming you've got athletes biking), that's
about 1 kilowatt-hour per day. If you paid someone $6/hour, that would
mean the electricity would cost ( $6/hour * 8 hours/day ) / ( 1
kilowatt-hour/day ) = $48 per kilowatt-hour or about 320 times more
expensive than generated power today.
Quit thinking dollars
written by Larry, August 22, 2007
The problem with everyone in the US is everything comes down to $'s. "Oh that's a great idea, but it would cost $X's" or "It will only save $X per year per person per blah blah blah". It's not about saving money, it's about consuming less electricity from dirty sources that are making us all sick, and killing the purchasing cialis in canada planet. If a good idea reduces our use of petroleum even a small amount, it's worth it- even if it does put us in the red.....
written by Randy Reed, September 22, 2007
WHAT IS 2.500 GWh/year convert to MW WHAT IS THE
written by K, October 31, 2007
I think this makes sense (when I write ^ it means exponent)

50W x 1h = 50Wh
50Wh x 365 = 18250Wh
18250Wh x 200,000,000 = 3.65x10^12 Wh
3.65x10^12 Wh = 3650x10^9Wh
10^9Wh = 1,000,000,000Wh = 1 GWh
3650x10^9Wh = 3650GWh
Math aside
written by celia, November 23, 2007
With all the people itching to work out and solar panels, I can totally see such gyms powering city blocks.
written by james, December 07, 2007
Dose anyone actual produce an exercise bike that kicks power out? I'm interested in buying one for my home! i think on a personal level the possible reduction in electricity bills minus the cost of a gym membership should pay of a bike withing a couple of years especially if you divide the whole lot by No. of family members!!
Residential use
written by Tom, December 19, 2007
Not sure if it would be worth it if the 50 watts per hour is accurate. I looked at my bill, and I average 11 KWH per day. So at that rate I would have to kill myself to levitra no doctor save a penny a day. Not to mention the cost of the equipment.
written by jack downar, April 28, 2008
I would also be interested in purchasing of ordering viagra such a machine (to power a TV...)
The concept is brilliant (have thought about it may times in years...) the key beeing REVERESE A TREND (from consumption to micro-generation)
written by question, October 21, 2009
what does the h stand for in GWh/yr?

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