(M)Power

Team: Willa Li (Harvard), Janaina Lucero (Sciences Po), Daniel Loeb (CRI), Duncan Stothers (Harvard)

A true smart city is both environmentally friendly and accessible to all. (M)Power synergizes these two goals by recycling energy, making use of otherwise wasted Metro heat to produce cheaper green energy. Our project drew inspiration from how living cells have perfected energy recycling in the electron transport chain, a process where free energy releases are harnessed to produce more useful energy molecules. Since each Metro line produces enough waste heat energy from braking and body heat to power over 10,000 typical Parisian apartments, we propose a system of Peltier tiles (thermoelectric generators) to capture part of this energy and turn it into usable, affordable electricity. (continue reading below)

This power can then be directed to green public housing projects to provide them with a less expensive alternative to solar panels. To paint a fuller picture of social inclusion, we will make transparent what is normally black-boxed data and technology. Using simple language and graphics, a website and kiosk system within the public housing will inform people of both their energy consumption and of new technological innovations. Furthermore, this data has the potential to become powerful teaching material in schools to inspire the next generation of innovators. In this way, (M)Power not only powers buildings, but also empowers people.

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