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World’s first road-based energy recovery system

Interview with Antony Edmondson-Bennett


The world’s first road-based energy recovery system is set to launch to the UK market to help drive the net zero agenda, following an introductory event taking place in Leeds this month.

Developed over the last five years by social impact brand, ROUUTE, ‘E:GEN™’ is a new and revolutionary source of sustainable energy that comprises of an impressive, patented road energy recovery system, which successfully captures and stores energy generated by vehicles as they drive over the road surface. 

We sat down with Antony Edmondson-Bennett, co-founder and CEO of ROUUTE for a brief downlow. 

Hi Antony. Let’s start by explaining in a few sentences the fundamentals of the road-based recovery system for our readers.  

We're basically utilising vehicle compression to generate electricity. So you drive over our system, it compresses, starts a hydraulic chain reaction in which we store mechanical energy, transfer that into electrical energy and therefore you have electricity. Now that can be stored locally in batteries, distributed into infrastructure or put back into the grid. We can do off and on grid and we can also do a mobile battery system. 

How does your tech actually capture and store the energy from the vehicles? 

We have what we call an RBS (road-based system) – that looks like a speedbump – which captures compression energy generated by vehicles as they drive over the road surface. Our technology absorbs the energy as pressure and flow, then sends that into an accumulator, which is a mechanical energy storage system, like a big oil tank. 

That is then discharged across a hydraulic motor, spinning an electric alternator and then basically put into a battery system to charge batteries. 

An RBS in the ground, in terms of scalability, is like a solar system, in that it captures the energy at source. It's then transferred into our E Gen system – our eco-generator – which is the patented part of the technology with the RBS. 

In a nutshell, it's basically using all of the forms of Newton's laws to generate the energy transfer and store that energy into our system. 

How will your tech help drive the net zero agenda? 

It's harnessing what I'd say is “wasted energy” first and foremost by using two things we have an abundance of: people and vehicle movements within the road infrastructure. (The system can be transferred into a rail-based system.) 

A basic 30 kilowatt system of ours can produce about 720 kilowatt hours of energy per day, which is the equivalent of around 2.1 metric tonnes of CO2 emissions being captured. 

The main eco-benefit is that our system is capturing energy at source, so there's no need for masses of infrastructure like you require with solar and wind. There's no requirement for masses of real estate either, so obviously it's just a small footprint. Plus, we use an infrastructure that already exists, so it's not like we're going away and knocking down trees or rainforests or anything. 

We don't have an adverse effect on ecosystems and it does actually give you a return on investment.  

Published On: 25/01/2024 14:05:00

 

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