Over an eleven-day period in Sydney and Melbourne nearly 10,000 people spent 580 hours generating electricity on our Infinity swing - now it's time to continue the conversation about creating affordable and sustainable energy.


Over an eleven-day period in Sydney and Melbourne nearly 10,000 people spent 580 hours generating electricity on our Infinity swing. This equals about three and a half weeks of continuous movement.

Which of these statements do you think is correct?

In total, the 10,000 people generated enough electricity to:

Crunch time

Yesterday marked the beginning of the UN climate summit in Paris. Whatever the outcome and flow on policies, energy is sure to be a major focus for governments around the globe.

How can we ensure we have affordable and sustainable energy? Science and technology can provide a solution to this conundrum. And the good news is that we can get there without having to resort to cold showers, warm beer or making other significant changes to our lifestyles.

It may seem like a fanciful notion, but the global energy sector has a habit of rewriting the rules, particularly in recent times. From the dramatic drop in the price of solar panels, to the shale gas revolution that has changed the face of the US energy supply, to promising developments in energy storage that could be a game-changer for renewable energy, technology is usually lying at the heart of major innovations.

At CSIRO, we’ve used solar power to create supercritical steam at temperatures never before achieved outside of fossil fuels. Our unique air conditioning system that responds to how you’re feeling, saving money and lowering emissions is now controlling more than 20 million square feet of floor space in Australia and the US, including the iconic Rockefeller Centre in New York. The high-performing UltraBattery we developed is being used to store renewable energy in Honda’s hybrid car, the Odyssey.

Beyond InfinityKookySwingers

So, where to from here? The swing has swung – we’ve had everyone from two Transformers, to a ‘just married’ couple, to an elderly gentleman who’d never been on a swing before – but the conversation around energy will go on.

Can we continue to enjoy our lifestyles, underpinned by affordable, available energy, while protecting the planet? That’s the question.

Science is ready to provide the answer.



Of course, we need to settle the intercity rivalry between Sydney and Melbourne.  So which city came up trumps in the Battle of the Swingers? The figures are below, and the winner is…Melbourne!

Total number of swingers Combined swinging time Total energy generated
Sydney 3,876 226 hours 340 Watt Hours
Melbourne 5,695 351 hours 553 Watt Hours

If you’d like to find out more about what we’re doing to address this challenge, check out our website. To find out more about our kinetic energy swing, check out our Infinity website.


  1. Curious how much energy the people had to consume to generate that much power, and the viability of it then. If more energy is needed than is generated it was a fruitless exercise.

    1. Hi Ron,

      Unfortunately we don’t have the figures for individual energy consumed, as each individual would have burned a different amount of energy depending on a range of things. Maybe we can capture this during a future event… However, we wanted people to appreciate and grasp how difficult it is to create energy – this was our key point. As we mentioned in the blog, all of the kinetic energy generated throughout the 11 days in Sydney and Melbourne was barely enough to run a house-hold appliance for 15 minutes – what must it take to power a city? It was a conversation starter, and if you take a look at some of our other work you will see we are busym working on the challenge of generating energy for our growing population. http://www.csiro.au/en/Research/EF/Areas/CSIROenergy

      CSIRO social media

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