Driving to Venice from Trieste? Your car will power the electronic signs along the highway. (Image courtesy Lee Coursey via flickr)
Israel-based Innowattech, which develops technology to convert mechanical energy from vehicular or rail traffic into electricity, has landed its first commercial contract: Italian infrastructure and civil engineering contractor Impregilo SpA has selected Innowattech as its exclusive energy provider for lighting road signs on the Venice-Trieste highway in Italy.
Innowattech demonstrated its technology last year on a 10-kilometer stretch of road near Haifa, where its R&D center is located on the campus of the Technion Israel Institute of Technology.
The Italian contract is part of a €225 million upgrade of the highway that began this year and is expected to be completed in 2013. “Under the agreement signed with Impregilo, the companies competing in relevant tenders in the project, such as road paving or installing electronic signs, will be required to adapt themselves to the new technology,” Innowattech’s CEO Dr. Lucy Edery-Azulay told TheMarker, the economics supplement of the Haaretz daily.
“The generators developed at Innowattech will be placed beneath the highway’s upper asphalt layer. The electrical charge generated by our technology is created during the movement of vehicles on the road… The electrical charge is stored via dedicated electrical systems and will supply electrical energy for lighting Variable Message System signs. Drivers will read traffic reports on electronic signs, which will be powered by electricity from the drivers’ own vehicles,” she explained.
More contracts in the pipeline
Edery-Azulay added that “already at the end of the current quarter, a number of additional agreements will be signed with various companies in the world that are interested in Innowattech’s technology. In the framework of this collaboration, Innowattech has already received a number of additional orders to implement projects with our technology from other companies in Italy for roads and railways.”
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