It may sound a bit futuristic but solar panel roadways could be a thing of the near future, very near future. Yes you heard me right, solar panel roadways.
It may sound like a strange concept, but it is not just a concept but a well planned project which is very well developed.
A couple in Idaho, USA have been pioneering the work which is well under way and is set for a trial project by a local council in their home city of Sandpoint. The project has been under way for the past 8 years and has been run by Scott and Julie Brusaw. The project has already received many public and private grants and are currently in the process of raising almost $2million through the crowd funding company Indiegogo.
The initial goal of $1million dollars raised through crowd funding has been well surpassed and they are closing in on raising $2million which will enable them to hire civil and structural engineers to improve the design. Scott is himself an electrical engineer and the solar panels are a hexagon shape which was originally rectangles. The shape change makes it easier to go round bends and also makes them stronger.
The solar panels will be multi function and are set for the following functions: It will have embedded LED lights which will light up for lane markings and road signs. They also hope that they will be able to recharge electric cars and the LED lights will be able to be used for advertising in car parks. This is what the trial project will be in their home city of Sandpoint.
It is also proposed that the panels will be able to melt the snow and then funnel it into underground storage tanks. This is exciting stuff but will it all be viable? Lets hope so.
The panels will have half inch tempered glass sandwiching the panels. This is some project and we look forward with anticipation to see what comes of it. Watch this space.
What do you think of the idea of solar panel roadways. Do you think it could work? Share your thoughts in our comments box below.
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