My neighborhood is right off of a highway that has nice broad shoulders. That means on any given day you’re bound to see anywhere from 5 to 30 or more bicyclists pedaling up and down the hilly, but smooth highway. Many of those bicyclists I see have smartphones attached to the handlebars or to their arms in wearable cases.
There are a huge number of available applications for smartphone users who also like to ride bikes. The apps can do things such as track their ride history, route, and even keep up with their cycling cadence and performance. Many of these people end up running bicycling specific applications as well as listening to music at the same time. What that means is battery life for a mobile device is greatly impacted.
A new project has turned up on Kickstarter called the Siva Cycle Atom that is a small power generator that you connect to any bicycle to keep your gadgets charged on a long bike ride. The project is currently seeking $85,000 and has raised over $52,000 with 28 days to go. The Atom uses what the developers call top-of-the-line magnetic rotors, powerful lithium-ion batteries, and will be built in the United States.
The device allows the power generating unit to directly charge your smartphone or other gadget and it comes with a removable battery pack as well. The designers constructed the Atom to output USB compatible 5 V at up to 500mA. The removable battery pack holds 1300 mAh of power. The device generates different amounts of electricity depending on how quickly you ride. At 3 mph, the power output is 0.75 Watts. At 10 mph, the device puts out 3 W of power and at 15 mph the power output is 4.5 W, which is the maximum output. If you want one of the Atom devices, a pledge of $95 will get you a unit by November of 2013.