Dhakka Brake: A Mechanical Regenerative Brake Device for the Cycle Rickshaw

During one of the cycle rickshaw trips I happen to be thinking about energy efficiency in vehicles and suddenly it struck me that we can store energy in a spring which is otherwise lost due to braking and that possibly it can be done purely mechanically for the cycle rickshaw, and this thought got me very excited as I realised it could be done cost effectively if it was purely mechanical.

I more I thought about more I was hooked on the idea.

The technology is a mechanical energy storage device for storing the momentum of cycle rickshaw when the brakes are applied, so that the energy which is wasted otherwise can be conserved to restart the vehicle.

Presently there is no system which can be used to save human labor wasted upon braking in a cycle rickshaw. It is highly strenuous to restart the cycle rickshaw, much more so in crowded areas where brakes have to be applied repeatedly.

This device can be very easily retrofitted to any existing cycle rickshaw (no modifications in the vehicle).

The device can help more than 8 million cycle rickshaw paddlers in India, and a much larger population of them in other Asian countries. The addressable Indian market for the device is close to Rupees 3 billion.


Development Status:

Prototype has been developed and road tested


IP Status:

Provisional Indian Patent has been filed


Competition:

Presently competition is not in terms of directly similar device but labor eliminating motor and battery fitments which cost 10 times this device cost. The battery and motor fitments also necessitate making changes in the cycle rickshaw itself.


We are yet to start production. We have finished prototyping a market ready version and are currently testing one more iteration for possibly reducing the cost of the device.