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Pavegen Systems
Founder Laurence Kemball-Cook
Key people
Laurence Kemball-Cook (CEO)
Website Edit this on Wikidata

Pavegen Systems is a technology company that has developed paving slabs to convert energy from people's footsteps into small amounts of electrical power.[1]


Pavegen Systems was founded in 2009 by Laurence Kemball-Cook. Cook, a graduate in Industrial Technology and Design from Loughborough University, took on a university placement with E.ON, and proposed using footfall as a potential power source.[2]

The development of the first prototype of the Pavegen flooring tile was funded by a Royal Society of Arts International Design Directions prize. The tile that converts kinetic energy from footsteps into electricity, while collecting data about walking traffic patterns.[3][4][5]

The first generation tile was made from recycled polymer, with the top surface made from recycled truck tires. Power is generated when a footfall compresses the slab by about 5 mm (0.2 in). The exact technology is a secret, but PaveGen officials have said it involves electromagnetic induction by copper coils and magnets.[6] Pavegen says each pedestrian generates an average of 5 watts per footstep at 12-48 volts DC,[7] enough to run an LED street lamp for 30 seconds.[1] The technology was developed by Pavegen founder Laurence Kemball-Cook.[8][9]

An improved tile was developed in 2016 which, according to the company, improved energy conversion by 'about 20 times'.[10] The amount of energy generated has been criticised, with one calculation claiming that walking for 4 hours on PaveGen paving would generate 0.02% of the average European's energy needs.[11] It has been suggested that the technology's strength rests in its ability to track volume and direction of traffic flow, thus providing useful metrics in a range of scenarios.[11]

Among other installations, the slabs have been laid at London's West Ham Underground station for the 2012 Olympic Games.[12] In April 2013, a demonstration installation with Schneider Electric harvested energy from the runners in the Paris Marathon.[13] PaveGen has also put these tiles on a public soccer field in Rio de Janeiro to allow play after sunset.[14]

A study of a central building at Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia, suggested that if pavers covered the 3.1% of the floor that sees the most foot traffic, it would generate an estimated 1.1 megawatt-hour per year, about 0.5% of the building's energy needs.[15]

In 2012, Pavegen raised £350,000 through London Business Angels, which helped the company create a tangible business. [16] In 2015, the company raised £1.9m through the Crowdcube platform, allowing them to gain 1500 investors and valued the company at about £17m. [17][18]

In 2015, Kemball-Cook acts as CEO of the company, For his invention, he was chosen as Businessman of the Year at the PEA Awards, [19] and presented with a Shell LiveWIREGrand Ideas Award.[20] He also was named as honorary Enterprise and Innovation Fellow by Loughborough University.[21]


PaveGen have distributors in Australia, New Zealand, Korea, Singapore, Thailand, Portugal, India and Japan.[22]


The Register points out that this device generates only "tiny, pointless amounts of energy". [11]. This borne out by an article published by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers in which the output from 54,267 steps on a Pavegen system is shown to have generated 217,028 watt-seconds, a mere 0.06 kWh.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Webster, George (13 October 2011). "Green sidewalk makes electricity -- one footstep at a time". CNN International. Retrieved 14 October 2011.
  2. ^ "See the futuristic flooring that lights up a city through kinetic energy harvesting". National Observer, By Charles Mandel | June 13th 2016
  3. ^ "Six inventions that are cooler than sci-fi". Niagara Falls Review, Craig and Marc Kielberger. January 23, 2016
  4. ^ "Akon and Shell create Africa’s first human and solar powered football pitch". Metro, Lee Thomas-Mason 19 Jan 2016.
  5. ^ "Akon and Shell Partner To Create Human/Solar Powered Football Fields". 360nobs, January 20, 2016.
  6. ^ Khadilkar, Dhananjay (20 April 2013). "Energy-Harvesting Street Tiles Generate Power from Pavement Pounder". Scientific American. Retrieved 20 April 2015.
  7. ^ "Pavegen Official Website". The Product. Archived from the original on 1 April 2014. Retrieved 2014-04-24.
  8. ^ Periani, Marconi. "TEDxRio+20 Speakers". TedxRio. Archived from the original on April 27, 2012. Retrieved July 2012. Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  9. ^ Ellis, Emma Grey (13 June 2016). "The Best New Green Energy Tech Could Be Right Underfoot". Wired. Retrieved 2016-06-13. He began developing the technology while studying design at Loughborough University, and developed the first prototype in all of 15 hours.
  10. ^ "Pavegen's power-generating floor is coming to Oxford Street". Wired, By Rowland Manthorpe. 11 May 2016
  11. ^ a b c "Pavegen: The Company that can't make energy out of crowds tries to make money out of them". The Register, 26 May 2015. Lewis Page
  12. ^ Ellis, Vicky (13 July 2012). "Foot power lights up Olympic walkway". energylivenews. Retrieved 13 July 2012.
  13. ^ Dhananjay Khadilkar (April 20, 2013). "Energy-Harvesting Street Tiles Generate Power from Pavement Pounder". Scientific American. Retrieved 2013-04-22.
  14. ^ "The floor tiles that use foot power to light up cities ". The Guardian, Killian Fox. 11 January 2015
  15. ^ Li, Xiaofeng; Strezov, Vladimir. "Modelling piezoelectric energy harvesting potential in an educational building". Energy Conversion and Management. 85: 435–442. doi:10.1016/j.enconman.2014.05.096.
  16. ^ "Private Investing | Newable". Retrieved 2018-06-05.
  17. ^ "Pavegen raising £750,000 investment on Crowdcube. Capital At Risk". Crowdcube. Retrieved 2018-06-05.
  18. ^ "Pavegen Kicks Off Crowdcube Campaign To Power Up Its Kinetic Flooring Business – TechCrunch". Retrieved 2018-06-05.
  19. ^ "The PEA Awards 2013 - MyGreenPod | Sustainable & ethical news & lifestyle hub". MyGreenPod | Sustainable & ethical news & lifestyle hub. Retrieved 2018-06-05.
  20. ^ "Home | Shell LiveWIRE UK". Retrieved 2018-06-05.
  21. ^ "Enterprise and Innovation Fellow talks about starting a business and time at university - Careers and Employability BlogCareers and Employability Blog". Retrieved 2018-06-05.
  22. ^

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