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Dutch experiment suggests that gravity could potentially rival solar or wind energy

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http://www.tanmarket.com - Dutch experiment suggests that gravity could potentially rival solar or wind energy as a way of generating electricity efficiently.

SHOWS: HENGELO, THE NETHERLANDS (RECENT) (HANDOUT - ACCESS ALL)

1. HANDS PUTTING WEIGHT ON A POST

2. FINGERS GENTLY PUSHING THE WEIGHT

3. VARIOUS OF PIEZO SPRING AT WORK

4. VOLTMETERS

5. HAND WITH SCREWS

6. MECHATRONICS SCIENTIST, JAN HOLTERMAN, AT WORK

7. INVENTOR AND ARCHITECT, JANJAAP RUIJSSENAARS, WITH HOLTERMAN

AMSTERDAM, THE NETHERLANDS (JULY 28, 2016) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL)

8. (SOUNDBITE) (English), ARCHITECT, JANJAAP RUIJSSENAARS, SAYING:

"What I really did is try to think of how have gravity be present in one point in one moment and the next moment not to be present, and then present again and not present, because once you have change, you can get electricity from something."

HENGELO, THE NETHERLANDS (RECENT) (HANDOUT - ACCESS ALL)

9. VOLTMETER

10. (SOUNDBITE) (Dutch), SCIENTIST, JAN HOLTERMAN, SAYING:

"What I want to show now, is how much energy it takes, with this set-up, to have a displacement of one millimetre on the spot where the meter clock is. With the weight below it takes approximately 0. 6 Newton."

11. MEASURING DEVICE IN USE

AMSTERDAM, THE NETHERLANDS (JULY 28, 2016) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL)

12. (SOUNDBITE) (English), ARCHITECT, JANJAAP RUIJSSENAARS, SAYING:

"The essence of the invention to me is that with a little input you get a great output because of gravity, and this is done by of course the weight - so we have gravity - and it has to be unstable, so it has to be on a high stick - so we celebrate instability instead of stability."

HENGELO, THE NETHERLANDS (RECENT) (HANDOUT-ACCESS ALL)

13. RUIJSSENAARS AND HOLTERMAN IN THE LAB

LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM (FILE) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL)

5. JIM REEVES, CO-CREATOR OF GRAVITYLIGHT, LIFTS BALLAST TO START LIGHT

6. BALLAST MOVING SLOWLY DOWNWARDS

7. TILT UPWARDS FROM BALLAST TO GRAVITYLIGHT

8. CLOSE-UP OF GRAVITYLIGHT

1. REEVES SWITCHES IT ON IN THE DARK

2. REEVES IN DIM LIGHT

3. GRAVITYLIGHT SHINING

STORY: A gentle touch or breeze is enough to introduce change and generate electricity by unbalancing a weight, with gravitational energy being transferred into an attached Piezo generator, according to a Dutch inventor.

Architect Janjaap Ruijssenaars developed the simple device using piezoelectricity - the electric charge that accumulates in response to applied mechanical stress.

He has worked alongside University of Twente scientists, including Jan Holterman, to assess his machine's potential.

According to Ruijssenaars, the remaining energy stored in the Piezo spring can be used to bring the weight back into its unstable equilibrium position.

Alongside Holterman, he filmed a laboratory experiment demonstrating the device.

"What I really did is try to think of how have gravity be present in one point in one moment and the next moment not to be present, and then present again and not present, because once you have change, you can get electricity from something," Ruijssenaars told Reuters.

In a press release concerning the research, released last December, Theo de Vries, system architect from the University of Twente's Robotics And Mechatronics group, said: "Thanks to clever use of gravity, the energy yield from the so-called Piezo method, which converts mechanical pressure into electrical energy, is increased from 20 to 80 per cent."

Ruijssenaars suggested that gravity was a more efficient energy producer than many other renewables. Solar energy is around 20 percent efficient, while wind energy can harvest around 45 percent of its maximum input.

Ruijssenaars told Reuters that, contrary to most existing technology, his innovation works well only when unstable.

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