San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas

December 8th, 2009
'Calories to Kilowatts' to be unveiled

11cardioTexas State’s students will soon be making electricity as they work out.


Texas State will unveil the largest human power plant in the world at 3 p.m on Tuesday at the Student Recreation Center. The community is invited to attend.

The “Calories to Kilowatts” project is 30 retrofitted elliptical machines that will convert human energy to electricity. The university hopes it will foster a greater awareness of the students on environmental sustainability.

Texas State is the first university in Texas to use this technology, which can convert the energy expended into electricity which is connected into the university power grid. The technology was developed by Clearwater, FL, company ReRev.

Texas State Vice President for student affairs Joann Smith, Associated Student Government president Christopher Covo and environmental service committee chair John Montoya will speak briefly before a short demonstration of the machines by Texas State students.

While ReRev has installed similar exercise machines in private establishments and universities around the nation, they have done nothing of this magnitude before. ReRev retrofitted the elliptical machines Dec.3-4 for energy production.

The $19,750 project was paid for by Texas State’s environmental service committee and the Department of Campus Recreation with support from Associated Student Government.

The retrofitted machines will convert a typical 30-minute workout and produce 50 watt hours of clean, carbon-free electricity, which is enough to power a laptop computer for one hour or a desktop model for 30 minutes.

For more information, call (512) 245-2392 or visit

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