Now, a foldable electric scooter

December 7th, 2007 - 3:43 pm ICT by admin  

Washington, December 7 (ANI): Keeping in mind the increasing problem of traffic congestion and pollution, Massachusetts Institute of Technology researchers have developed a compact scooter for sharing, which is powered by electricity and can be folded to half its size.

The researchers say that their compact scooter may make it easier to park, store, or carry onto subways or buses. They believe that their innovation may offer a mass transit option almost as convenient as a car.

“This vehicle provides a clean, green solution that has potentially very high utilization rates. If it’s used a lot, it could reduce the need for private vehicles on the road,” Discovery News quoted Ryan Chin, design leader and Ph.D. candidate in media, arts and sciences at the institute’s Media Lab, as saying.

The MIT electric scooter has just 150 parts as compared to conventional scooters, which have a package of about 1,000 parts associated with the gas tank and combustion engine.

Chin believes that fewer parts will make the scooter cheaper and lighter.

The scooter gets electricity from a battery, which gets recharged every time the vehicle is replaced to its rack. The battery can be placed anywhere, and the frame can accommodate a joint that allows the bike to be folded to about the size of a medium piece of luggage.

Chin thinks that the final vehicle will weigh around 85 pounds, as opposed to conventional scooters that weigh about 265 pounds with fuel in the tank.

He says that hundreds or thousands of these scooters may be provided in racks near subway stops, bus stations, convenience stores or parks.

According to him, all that the riders will be required to do is to swipe a credit card remove a vehicle from the rack, where it is charging.

The commuter can eventually deposit the scooter at another rack at the end of their destination, Chin adds. (ANI)

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