Have you ever thought it would be cool if your flooring could monitor your steps? Well, that is what smart flooring is all about. Though this term has not come too far, but these technologies are coming to the market. It can have a big and impressive impact on energy efficiency as well as on the environment. These flooring technologies can be used by larger businesses as well as homes to run various systems and applications.
How Does this Work?
This technology has a quite interesting way of working. There is a very thin layer of sensors which is installed into the floor. The radio signals then send those data received through the sensors to a central data warehouse. There is a nursing home located in France that has this flooring technology. Whenever the floor detects that someone had fallen, immediately it send that data to the nurse’s station. So, they can rush there for immediate assistance.
Besides tracking the movements of the people, it can even generate electricity. Elizabeth Redmond created PowerLeap flooring which can apply piezoelectricity to the models of this flooring. She has imagines that the joggers of the Central Park can power up safety lighting when they pound on the pavement.
What Does it do?
This idea is already installed in some of the buildings. One of such places where this technology is installed is the London’s Heathrow Airport. Even it is installed at one of the schools in Bloomington, Indiana. Each and every tile has a sensor installed in it which can detect the movement every time someone steps on it. Hence, it can produce a huge amount of energy by simply changing the magnetic field present underneath the tiles.
According to the creators, it can generate about 7 watts of power whenever someone steps on the tiles. The energy is then stored inside the batteries. This power can be used later for lighting when it is needed. The floor looks quite normal from above but it hide things underneath. There is a circuit that has the sensors and all the other essential parts to transfer the data recorded.
Though these tiles are highly functional and come with lots of benefits, it also comes with a high price tag. These tiles can cost you a lot. For covering a square meter of the area with these tiles , it may cost you around $1,600.
This smart flooring idea can bring a revolutionary change to the world of energy efficiency and the flooring industry. It can also track your steps and tell you how many steps you took in total. So, all these data collected by the floor can actually help you in many ways. Though it is great, it can cost a lot of you. Thus, these are installed only in the business sectors as of now. Places like hospitals and nursing homes need this technology to detect various things. This can help the patients as well as the nurses to be more careful about the patients in the hospital.