It is commonly known how fast solar energy market is growing. There are a lot of investments in this sector each year. Latest inventions also show how perspective this source of energy is. Below you can find one of the most interesting examples.
Triple energy than USA demands
What are solar roadways? Roadways built from solar PV panels. First thing that comes to our mind is „it can't works – they will be too vulnerable for damage”. Nothing could be more wrong. They are designed in a way to make them able to take 250,000 - pound load on their surface, without any damage. And it is just the beginning of unusual news.
Scott and Julie Brusaw came up with the idea of solar roadways in 2012 but it took them 5 years to develop the product. It was worth waiting that long. According to Brusaw's calculations, replacing standard roads with solar in USA might lead to achieving three times more energy production than the whole country needs. What is most important, it would be produced only from RES without support of any other technologies.
Imagine highways made from hexagonal glass panels, which don not have any holes, do not need to be repaired every year, remove ice and snow in winter by themselves and have LED lights lines (which could be modified for signal crosswalks places, etc.), instead of painted ones. Think how much money could be saved – reduced costs of snow removal, endless repairs, painting, energy used to provide light and other elements of infrastructure. And finally, by connecting to a grid they can produce more energy than country demands! Is not it great?
Where is the catch?
There is one main problem concerning the implementation of this innovative concept – funds. The Brusaws have run a crowdfunding campaign in order to raise funds necessary to start production of their prototype. They have received 2.2 millions dollars, twice as much as the planned target was. Additionally, they got two subsidies from Federal Highway Administration and a private grant. The technology (especially at implementation start) is not cheap. We have already heard voices of malcontents about standard PV panels, so we can imagine what may happen in solar roadways' case. Even if solar roadways pay for themselves (same as PV panels, which return their cost in some period of time), as Brusaws claim, there still will be the problem of production costs. It may be enough serious reason to complain for many opponents of solar energy technology...
Road to the future?
We believe solar roadways will find their place in solar energy world, similarly as it happened in case of standard PV panels. Such an innovative idea after implementation with cooperation with other industrial inventions can have a great impact on development of civilization. If you want to know more about this great concept, we highly recommend main website of the project and this funny YT video:
and you can also read about the initiative on Brusaws project Indiegogo website: