During last year’s Hurricane Sandy blackout in New York City, I would have welcomed a way to convert a plentiful source of energy – pedaling – into the juice to charge my cell phone or power an LED light. Enter the Velo Bicycle Generator, a bicycle powered charger for use with the compact ReadySet intelligent battery from Fenix.

One hour of pushing the pedals on a single-speed bike enables the batter to charge up to 10 phones a day or keep an LED light operating for 30 hours. The ReadySet battery was originally created for use in Africa, where it helps local entrepreneurs provide energy from renewable sources to charge cell phones, lights and other devices in communities without reliable access to utilities.

The battery was introduced into the consumer market in the U.S. and Canada last November for emergency preparedness, camping or just to give a small leg up to clean energy. While it is currently sold with a weather-proof, 15-watt mini solar panel charger, the 100-watt peak dynamo bicycle charger is expected to be available soon. (You can sign up for email notification here.)

With a stand that elevates the back wheel and puts it into contact with a roller, the device is for indoor riding – think stationary bike or trainer. In the mean time, passive charging with power from the sun sounds pretty practical, too.

ReadySet Solar Kit, $225

Top photo: ReadySet Solar Kit, left; Velo Generator, right.

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