Ever wished you could just pop a motor on your bike to give you a hand up those hills (no, we’re not back on the subject of mechanical doping)? A new invention, the Semcon bike engine, aims to do just that, and its creators claim it could cost under €100.
Electric bikes or e-bikes are growing in popularity around the world, but they aren’t cheap and they’re often heavy. The creators of the bike engine set out to design a product that supplied the benefits of having a motor – less effort required to get up hills, pedal assistance on the flat – but that came in a package that was easy to use, could be swapped between bikes, fitted to any type, and used on old machines as well as new ones.
“The needs and wishes of the typical biker is what got us started,” said Anders Sundin, technical director at Semcon, which describes itself as a technology company specialising in engineering and product design and development.
“The benefits of the electrified bike are obvious, but they are expensive,” Sundin added. “Especially if you, like many others, already have a regular bike that you like and short distances to travel. The ambition with this engine is to make it easy, affordable and attractive for any biker to turn their bike into an electrified bike.”
Semcon describes the invention as a smart engine. It fastens onto the seat tube of a bicycle and drives the wheel using a battery powered motor via contact with the tyre. It provides an output of 150 watts, and will only add drive between 7 and 25 km/h. The engine contains a small computer and sensor which detects when the rider is pedalling, and only kicks in to provided an assist at certain speeds. This on-board computer also means, Semcon says, that it can develop different apps in the future, including a way of prioritising speed or reach for managing battery life, theft control or tracking.
You can read more at BikeRadar.com