— The Erimtan Angle —

On Sunday, 25 May 2014, the New Zealand-based reporter Adrien Taylor states that a “company in the United States has raised more than $1 million to start making roads entirely out of solar panels. They say the panels could produce three times the electricity the US needs, and a New Zealand scientist says there’s potential for the technology here too. It may seem like science fiction, but the Solar Roadways project wants to make energy-generating roads a reality . . . Scott and Julie Brusaw have received more than $1 million in internet crowdfunding to begin production of their solar panel road system”.[i] The IndieGogo campaign was started on ‘Apr 21 and will close on May 31, 2014 (11:59pm PT)’.[2]

The dedicated IndieGogo page tells us that “Solar Roadways is a modular paving system of solar panels that can withstand the heaviest of trucks (250,000 pounds). These Solar Road Panels can be installed on roads, parking lots, driveways, sidewalks, bike paths, playgrounds . . . literally any surface under the sun. They pay for themselves primarily through the generation of electricity, which can power homes and businesses connected via driveways and parking lots. A nationwide system could produce more clean renewable energy than a country uses as a whole (http://solarroadways.com/numbers.shtml). They have many other features as well, including: heating elements to stay snow/ice free, LEDs to make road lines and signage, and attached Cable Corridor to store and treat stormwater and provide a “home” for power and data cables. EVs will be able to charge with energy from the sun (instead of fossil fuels) from parking lots and driveways and after a roadway system is in place, mutual induction technology will allow for charging while driving’.[3] 

Additionally, the following information can also be found on IndieGogo page: ‘ Solar Roadways has received two phases of funding from the U.S. Federal Highway Administration for research and development of a paving system that will pay for itself over its lifespan. We are about to wrap up our Phase II contract (to build a prototype parking lot) and now need to raise funding for production. Our glass surface has been tested for traction, load testing, and impact resistance testing in civil engineering laboratories around the country, and exceeded all requirements. Solar Roadways is a modular system that will modernize our aging infrastructure with an intelligent system that can become the new Smart Grid. We won the Community Award of $50,000 by getting the most votes in GE’s Ecomagination Challenge for “Powering the Grid” in 2010. We had the most votes again in their 2011 Ecomagination Challenge for “Powering the Home”. On August 21, 2013, Solar Roadways was selected by their peers as a Finalist in the World Technology Award For Energy, presented in association with TIME, Fortune, CNN, and Science. Solar Roadways was chosen by Google to be one of their Moonshots in May of 2013. Solar Roadways was chosen as a finalist in the IEEE Ace Awards in 2009 and 2010. Solar Roadways has given presentations around the country including: TEDx Sacramento, Google’s Solve for X at Google’s NYC Headquarters, NASA, Keynote Speaker for the International Parking Institute’s Conference and much more . . . Solar Roadways is tackling more than solar energy: The FHWA tasked us with addressing the problem of stormwater. Currently, over 50% of the pollution in U.S. waterways comes from stormwater. We have created a section in our Cable Corridors for storing, treating, and moving stormwater. The implementation of our concept on a grand scale could create thousands of jobs in the U.S. and around the world. It could allow us all the ability to manufacture our way out of our current economic crisis’.[4] Yes, it is true . . . it just sounds to good to be true, or does it???

The New Zealand solar energy researcher Dr Justin Hodgkiss throws a spanner in the works by saying “[i]f the roads got dirty then the cells [wouldn’t] work”.[5] And that means that a dedicated clean-up crew would have to be on call 24/7, or more jobs in the offing, which cannot be all that bad . . . perhaps. The journalist Taylor. for his part, says that the “Solar Roadways team concede their system would be expensive, but say it would pay itself off through energy production and lower maintenance than traditional roads. And with the amount of money that’s been pledged to their project, it’s clear they’re not the only ones who think it’s worth investing in”.[6]

 

[1] Adrien Taylor, “Backers pledge more than $1M for solar” 3 News (25 May 2014). http://www.3news.co.nz/Backers-pledge-more-than-1M-for-solar-roads/tabid/417/articleID/345694/Default.aspx.

[2] “Solar Roadways” IndieGogo. https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/solar-roadways.

[3] “Solar Roadways”.

[4] “Solar Roadways”.

[5] Adrien Taylor, “Backers pledge more than $1M for solar”.

[6] Adrien Taylor, “Backers pledge more than $1M for solar”.

Comments on: "Solar Roadways or the Path to the Future???" (2)

  1. Wow amazing, what an incredible invention. These guys deserve a massive credit!

  2. Reblogged this on Ideas Of Mass Destruction and commented:
    The most amazing invention that could remodel our future and help save the planet!!!

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