We’ve already seen battery-powered attachments that provide electric power to regular pushbikes thanks to innovations such as the UK’s Rubbee. Now researchers at MIT have created the Copenhagen Wheel, which fits onto any bike and captures energy from the rider’s cycling, offering a power boost when they need it for harder inclines later on.
The wheel features a red hub, which contains the technology that converts the energy expelled when riders pedal and stores it in a removable lithium battery. The hub also includes sensors that detect when the bike is traveling uphill and automatically offers some help in the form of powered assist. However, the wheel can also be connected to users’ smartphones using the companion app, where they can manually choose to receive an extra boost from the wheel. The app offers more features such as locking and unlocking the device, ride tracking and using preset activation for particular rides. The Copenhagen wheel is easy to install and weighs 5.9 kg, adding only a small amount of weight to the bike. The video below explains more about the device:
The Copenhagen Wheel makes long and difficult rides easier for commuters without having to be charged like a typical electric bike, meaning it’s as good for the environment as a regular pushbike. However, those who want to get their hands on the device early will be set back USD 799 for a pre-order. Are there other ways to make cycling easier and more enjoyable for those who are still more comfortable in their car?
Spotted by Tony Penna, written by Springwise