Energy harvesting floor tiles: Converting Footsteps into Renewable Electricity

Pavegen: Energy generating tiles at Heathrow
Pavegen tile at Heathrow Airport (image from Pavegen)

We’ve seen a lot of alternative energy processes and techniques. There are solar panels, wind turbines, hydroelectric power plants. What about kinetic energy? How about turning our footsteps into energy? Yes, it’s possible.

Pavegen, founded in 2009, is the global leader in harvesting energy and data from footfall. They invented a smart flooring solution in which it generates electricity from footsteps. The ideal place for these smart tiles are areas that are high-footfall urban environment. As more footsteps means more energy harvested. The smart tile is said to be waterproof, designed to be used in harsh outdoor locations.

So how does it works?

“The Pavegen technology is a multifunctional custom flooring system. As people step on the tiles, their weight causes electric-magnetic induction generators to vertically displace, which results in a rotatory motion that generates off-grid electricity. Additionally, each tile is equipped with a wireless API that transmits real-time movement data analytics, whilst directly producing power when and where it is needed. Pavegen is also able to connect to a range of mobile devices and building management systems.”

They currently have two products, one is Permanent, the other is an Events tile. The Pavegen Events tile is easily assembled due to its modular design. The Plug and Play capabilities are compatible with a variety of applications, including digital data output, photo pods, and social media integrations.


Not forgetting to mention that Pavegen is made of 100% recycled rubber which is from recycled truck tires and the base is constructed from over 80% recycled materials.

The Pavegen tile collects wireless information from every footstep as each tile is equipped with a data transmitter.

These data is used to determine and analyze consumer patterns by providing the ability to predict peak timings, prime locations and volume of people within a designated area.


Apart from it’s features, by just walking, you can give back to the the community or to other charitable causes. Each footstep collected is converted into a digital currency which can be used to reward loyalty or to donated to charity.

Pavegen is a promising tile as it gives a lot of benefits. It promotes clean energy, recycling, community involvement with the use of innovation and technology. It is amazing to think that with a simple act of walking, it can have so much impact not just into the built environment but to the users itself.
Cost and maintenance could be the issue on this product. Although we have no clue on how much it can cost but having these data infrastructure could be costly. In terms of maintenance, one must consider who will maintain the tiles as the tiles have special parts and specifications. I am sure that the company will be giving technical support it is just that it has to be considered.
Overall, Pavegen is a brilliant product with a promising vision. I hope that it will continue to innovate and contribute to the built environment.

Below is the video of Pavegen as featured by TechCrunch.

#AEC #Architecture #BuildingMaterials #Innovation #Construction #renewableenergy

This post is not a paid post.