Major strides have been taken towards the goal of industrial scale harvesting of mechanical energy. The triboelectric effect is the process of creating electrical charge by two surfaces contacting or rubbing together. With a single tap of the foot it is possible to provide energy to 1000 led bulbs. A single 1 square meter pad can produce upto 400 watts of electricity.
The potential for generating electricity in the home, office, or even outdoors is huge. How about getting all those gym bunnies to generate electricity simply by doing their daily aerobics workout? Sidewalks can become energy generators. All those vehicles driving around the town can be used to pump energy into the grid. A 3 meter sidewalk 1 Km long could be used to generate 3 x 1000 x 400w = 1,200,000 watts or 1 Megawatt of electricity. Pave the most active areas of a town and you have surpassed solar and wind capacity with a near constant supply of energy.
Taking things up a notch researchers are looking at using water as a generator. A field of buoys floating on a lake, stream or harbour could be used to provide a constant source of electrical energy. Even more energy can be generated by allowing ocean waves to smash against objects creating huge amounts of power to be fed into the grid.
This is the dawn of a new age of recycling mechanical kinetic energy on a massive scale. Who needs nuclear in a mechanical world where every person on the planet contributes back to the power supply by simply going about their day.