A prototype of a speed bump that can capture kinetic energy from vehicles passing by, to convert it into clean green electricity has been created by a team of scientists.
According to a report by Fox News, the prototype, known as the "Motion Power Energy Harvester", was designed by engineer Jerry Lynch from New Energy Technologies.
The prototype device is now being tested at a Burger King restaurant in Hillside, New Jersey.
It looks like a flattened speed bump with long pedals across the top that press down when tires roll over them.
That force turns gears inside, generating 2000 watts of electricity instantaneously, according to the engineers who designed it.
The trick is collecting that energy and distributing it in a cost-effective way.
Engineer Jerry Lynch was handed the concept and tasked with creating the prototype, explaining the final version will involve more bumps and more pedals to create more juice.
"If this is multiplied by ten times the length and we have 100,000 or 150,000 cars a year, the device will pay back in less than two years," Lynch estimated.
Meetesh Patel, President and CEO of New Energy Technologies, said that Motion Power devices could be effectively used in any number of high traffic areas including shopping centers, intersections, rest areas, border crossings, and toll plazas, but admits that any use on public roads would require negotiations with local governments and highway departments.
"We're creating a new industry and if we're first to market with this thing we definitely will be at the top of the wave," Patel said.
No one is suggesting the device in the drive-thru lane would provide enough power to run the restaurant, including franchise owner Drew Paterno, but he jumped at the offer to install the prototype at his location on Route 22, and said that he'd consider placing an order for a dozen of them.
"If the thing works and it does what we think it will do, we'd be interested in installing it in all our locations," Drew said.
That won't be possible until the Motion Power device is ready for market, which Patel said could happen sometime next year.