IMAGINE if your bike could talk.
Deakin University researchers have developed a bike that can tell the rider how efficiently they’re riding and identify parts that might need maintenance.
The Smart Bike has been designed by researchers at Deakin’s School of Engineering and Institute for Frontier Materials (IFM) and could benefit recreational cyclists around the world.
The bike features cutting edge technology such as sensors in the carbon laminate that can tell the rider how well they’re riding, identify parts that might need maintenance or determine when its useful life is over.
Smart Bike project manager Paul Collins said bike manufacturers needed to target riders other than professionals in the peloton, as many of those got their bikes for free anyway.
“So there’s a particular market out there for recreational riders, for whom having a less costly, stronger, faster, more long-lasting and ultimately smarter bike is the most important thing and those are the people we’re really pitching our Smart Bike at,” Dr Collins said.
“This project was about taking the research, in which the School of Engineering and IFM is a world leader, and bringing it into the creation of a 21st century bike.
“I guess the sensors in the carbon laminate will excite most riders. As well as being able to tell them how efficiently they are riding their bike, it can identify parts that might need maintenance or determine when its useful life is over.
“With the Smart Bike, we expect that to be a lot longer than the lifespan of existing bikes.
“For titanium components, we have produced superior wearing surfaces, and less friction on moving components means they will last longer and perform better.”
Dr Collins said a number of companies were already in discussion with Deakin about turning the innovations in the Smart Bike into commercially viable products.
The bike will be on display at the Warrnambool Art Gallery until Friday, October 19. It coincides with Deakin University partnering with Warrnambool City Council to present Ride/Walk2Work Day on October 17.