Human motion used as energy source to power stop signals on new London buses

The act of pressing the bell push generates enough electrical power for a wireless module to activate the stop display and audible stop signal. The wireless bell push system, manufactured by UK company BMAC, compliments the green concept of the new London buses which utilise the very latest diesel hybrid technology, making it one of the most environmentally friendly buses of its kind.    

While other push-buttons need to be connected to the signal receiver at the bus driver’s position via metres of cable, the BMAC stop button functions with the EnOcean miniaturised energy converter ECO 200 which offers more than 300,000 switching cycles and a small batteryless wireless module. The radio signal is unique to each stop button, ensuring no interference with other buttons in this bus or other buses nearby. The receiver module is connected to the bus’ electrical system and the bell pushes are then fitted into place. After installation, each stop button in a bus is programmed for its own logic circuit – for example, front, middle, rear or wheelchair users. The energy harvesting wireless solution saves up to 100 metres of cabling in the bus, saving installation effort and avoiding the need to replace defective cables, which can be time-consuming.

“The concept of a wireless bell push system has been an aspiration for bus manufacturers for years. It takes many hours on the production line to wire up to 25 bell pushes into a vehicle. Battery powered push buttons also prove inadequate as they require routine replacement, regular maintenance and have a negative impact on the environment, especially in their waste cycle,” says Andy Overend, Sales Manager, BMAC Ltd. “Thanks to EnOcean’s battery-less wireless technology we have developed a totally electro mechanical Wireless Bell Push system – solving all these problems.”

EnOcean’s energy harvesting technology powers wireless communications by collecting energy from the surrounding environment from motion, light and temperature differentials. Even people themselves can become a source of energy, by pressing a button for instance, or through heat from their bodies. This eliminates the need to install complicated and costly cabling or to fit batteries, making products based on this technology maintenance-free.

EnOcean-based products have already been successfully deployed in more than 250,000 buildings globally, helping to create energy-efficient building via building automation and energy management. Further uses range from the smart home and the smart grid to solutions for industry, logistics and transportation. The EnOcean wireless protocol is ratified as the international standard ISO/IEC 14543-3-10, the only standard for energy harvesting wireless solutions.


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