MDI students develop concept that can convert mechanical pressure applied on slippers during walking into electrical energy
Imagine walking into a retail store,putting on special slippers that can convert foot pressure into electricity and charging a battery attached to your ankle.
Two students of Management Development Institute (MDI),Gurgaon Shubhi Gupta and Prateek Goyal have developed this concept,which they call the green walk journey. The concept won the second prize at the Schneider Electrics international Case Challenge Go Green in the City,held in Paris recently.
According to Shubhi and Prateek,if there are 800 customers walking into a retail store every day,the foot pressure of all can bring around 3,700 KW of electricity per year. The concept is extremely environment friendly.
A recent survey had said Gurgaon has around 115 retail,so it is easy to imagine the amount of electricity that can be generated.
The concept starts with Piezoelectric strips,which can be inserted in the heel of slippers. When a person wearing the GreenWalk slipper walks,the mechanical pressure applied on the slipper will be converted to electrical energy. This energy will be stored in a battery attached to the ankle of the person wearing the slipper, said Shubhi.
She added both the employees in a retail store and the customers could use the slippers,thereby increasing electricity generation. While the employees can wear the slippers all the time,the customers can be asked to wear them when they walk into a mall.
We have talked to both customers and retailers,and they are very positive with the idea. On normal days,around 800 customers come into a mall on an average. This number can go up to 10,000 during festival time. One can generate a lot of electricity through this, said Shubhi.
The duo said although such a concept has been experimented before,the idea never clicked. The individual cost of such a model is very high. We have targeted bulk supplies and that is why retail stores. The cost,if produced in bulk,can come down to $35 in comparison to more than $100 if tried individually, Shubhi said.
Around 500 teams from top business and educational institutes across the world participated in the first round of the challenge. Only 100 teams were selected for the next round and 25 were invited for the grand finale in Paris.
We surveyed the retail stores and most of them agreed to buy the product if created. Customers we talked to also showed interest in buying and using such a product. Although,Schneider has shown interest in the model,we have not been approached by anyone yet. We intend to start working on the model soon, Shubhi added.
Professors at MDI said they were very proud of their students and it was a viable idea,which can be commercialised.
We as professors only helped them to connect to various companies. The entire concept was theirs and is an original one. We only tried to help them in their marketing research. We also assess whether the idea is viable and found that it can change the entire scenario as described by the students, said Kanwal Kapil,chairperson of placements at MDI.