Richmond’s track record as an environmentally-friendly borough has just become even more green and shiny thanks to an ingenious new invention by students at Kingston University.
Under the guidance of senior lecturer Paul Brennan, the young inventors used cutting-edge engineering techniques to create an electric bike. The battery-powered bike can be charged at Richmond’s two electric vehicle charging points and emits no carbon dioxide whatsoever.
The bike can reach speeds of over 70mph and has been fine-tuned to perform almost as well as petrol or diesel-powered vehicles – but without causing any damage to the environment.
The students even put it to the test in the Isle of Man’s green TT race, and were thrilled with the results.
Sponsorship for the design project came from Richmond Council, through the South and West London Transport Conference.
Councillor David Trigg, the Cabinet Member for Traffic, Transport and Parking, went along to see the bike for himself and to learn how it could be beneficial to the environment once widely-used.
He said: “It’s great to see the future of British inventing is alive and well at our local university and in a part of London where the environmental agenda is so important.
“I’m very pleased that Richmond Council, through its leading role in Sweltrac, can support innovation like this, which is leading the way towards the future of environmentally friendly forms of transport.”
The university team’s next goal is to produce a road-ready version of the bike which people could charge using an ordinary plug socket at home. They hope to have the new model ready within a year.