Avid cyclists typically pride themselves in reducing their carbon footprint via their active, healthy lifestyle. Now bikers can shrink that footprint even more with a new bicycle accessory that uses pedal power to charge their smartphone.
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Developed by Siva Cycle, the Atom is a small device that mounts to the rear axle and charges USB-powered devices with the kinetic energy pumped out by the cyclist. A series of small gears, set in motion by the spinning wheel, produces a current that passes through the device's internal electronics, where it's converted to usable electricity.
The Atom can be used two ways: to either directly charge a smartphone or charge a removable 1300 mAh battery that can be connected to a device later. Whichever way it's used, the the Atom has a charge rate of 500 mA - about the same speed as a smartphone connected to a computer via USB.
"The only limit to how much electricity you create is how often you ride," said co-founder and CEO Dave Delcourt in an interview with VentureBeat. "We are transforming the daily ride by turning the energy, desire and passion of riding into something with everyday use."