Solar Roadways

Introduction

SR

U.S. Senator Mike Crapo (R-ID) talks about Solar Roadways

Years ago, when the phrase “Global Warming” began gaining popularity, we started batting around the idea of replacing asphalt and concrete surfaces with solar panels that could be driven upon. We thought of the “black box” on airplanes: We didn’t know what material that black box was made of, but it seemed to be able to protect sensitive electronics from the worst of airline crashes.

Suppose we made a section of road out of this material and housed solar cells to collect energy, which could pay for the cost of the panel, thereby creating a road that would pay for itself over time. What if we added LEDs to “paint” the road lines from beneath, lighting up the road for safer night time driving? What if we added a heating element in the surface (like the defrosting wire in the rear window of our cars) to prevent snow/ice accumulation in northern climates? The ideas and possibilities just continued to roll in and the Solar Roadway project was born.

Our latest video – by Michele Ohayon

In 2009, we received a contract from the Federal Highway Administration to build the first ever Solar Road Panel prototype. During the course of its construction, we learned many lessons and discovered new and better ways to approach this project. These methods and discoveries are discussed throughout this website. Please enjoy and send us any questions that you may have.

This YERT video is featured in their full-length documentary, now being screened across the U.S. For a screening or presentation near you, click on the following “YERT plate”: YERT

After successful completion of the Phase I SBIR contract, we were awarded a follow-up 2-year Phase II $750,000 SBIR contract by the Federal Highway Administration beginning in 2011. With this award, a prototype parking lot will be built and then tested under all weather and sunlight conditions.

The heart of the Solar Roadway™ is the

Solar Road Panel™

The Solar Roadway is a series of structurally-engineered solar panels that are driven upon. The idea is to replace all current petroleum-based asphalt roads, parking lots, and driveways with Solar Road Panels that collect energy to be used by our homes and businesses. Our ultimate goal is to be able to store excess energy in or alongside the Solar Roadways. This renewable energy replaces the need for the current fossil fuels used for the generation of electricity. This, in turn, cuts greenhouse gases literally in half.

Solar Road Panel

Solar Road Panel

Each individual panel consists of three basic layers:

Road Surface Layer – translucent and high-strength, it is rough enough to provide great traction, yet still passes sunlight through to the solar collector cells embedded within, along with LEDs and a heating element. It is capable of handling today’s heaviest loads under the worst of conditions. Weatherproof, it protects the electronics layer beneath it.

Electronics Layer Contains a microprocessor board with support circuitry for sensing loads on the surface and controlling a heating element. No more snow/ice removal and no more school/business closings due to inclement weather. The on-board microprocessor controls lighting, communications, monitoring, etc. With a communications device every 12 feet, the Solar Roadway is an intelligent highway system.

Base Plate LayerLayer – While the electronics layer collects energy from the sun, it is the base plate layer that distributes power (collected from the electronics layer) and data signals (phone, TV, internet, etc.) “downline” to all homes and businesses connected to the Solar Roadway. Weatherproof, it protects the electronics layer above it.

TEDx logo TEDx

Scott presented the Solar Roadways at a TEDx Talk in Sacramento on April 16th, 2010. He was given 18 minutes for “The talk of his life” and it went great!

 

Overview

When multiple Solar Road Panels are interconnected, the intelligent Solar Roadway is formed. These panels replace current driveways, parking lots, and all road systems, be they interstate highways, state routes, downtown streets, residential streets, or even plain dirt or gravel country roads. Panels can also be used in amusement parks, raceways, bike paths, parking garage rooftops, remote military locations, etc. Any home or business connected to the Solar Roadway (via a Solar Road Panel driveway or parking lot) receives the power and data signals that the Solar Roadway provides. The Solar Roadway becomes an intelligent, self-healing, decentralized (secure) power grid.

The images below illustrate how the west can power the east in the evening and the east can power the west in the morning hours.North America North America

Africa/Europe Africa and Europe

Imagine a world-wide system where the “lit” half of the world is always powering the “dark” half of the world!

Everyone has power. No more power shortages, no more roaming power outages, no more need to burn coal (50% of greenhouse gases). Less need for fossil fuels and less dependency upon foreign oil. Much less pollution. How about this for a long term advantage: an electric road allows all-electric vehicles to recharge anywhere: rest stops, parking lots, etc. They would then have the same range as a gasoline-powered vehicle. Internal combustion engines would become obsolete. Our dependency on oil would come to an abrupt end.

It’s time to upgrade our infrastructure – roads and power grid – to the 21st century.

Advantages of Solar Power

Solar power systems have many benefits. They are quiet. They don’t produce any pollution. They are reliable, there are no moving parts to worry about, so they require minimal maintenance. Another great advantage of a solar power system is that it’s modular. The cells (or building blocks) are available in a wide variety of wattage, ranging from a mere fraction of a watt to more than 300 watts. Large solar power plants have higher megawatts, but most individual systems are much smaller. You can choose the solar power modules required to deliver the power you desire for your system.

One downside of solar energy is that much of the sun’s energy is lost during the process of transferring sunlight to electricity. To solve this challenge, larger and more efficient panels continue to be manufactured all the time. And while they are still less efficient than they ultimately might be, they are still the renewable energy system of choice because they require so little maintenance and are quite durable.

A solar panel system should last around fifty years, as long as it was properly installed. A pretty wise investment, all things considered! If you choose to install your own solar power system, you will appreciate its quiet, low-maintenance, pollution-free, safe and reliable operation, as well as the degree of independence it provides.

Visit this site for more Alternative Energy Info. Dave’s Alternative Energy Site

Renewable Energy Off the Grid

Renewable Energy Off the Grid

This page contains information on why and how to generate renewable energy while living off the grid, also you will find useful tips on how to satisfy most of your power needs without having to rely on the city for electricity. Generating your own power off the grid is very essential if you want to declare your independence and be fully or mostly self suffecient. Spending around $700 on wind generators and solar panels can reduce your power costs more than $1300 a year (especially if you build them and install them yourself), plus you will feel good about using green and renewable energy.

Benefits of Generating Renewable Energy

You can cut your electricity costs by 80%, or even make your power company pay you, and of course, you will feel good to know that you’re doing your part to save the planet from pollution. These are uncertain times, energy costs continue to soar, natural resources are being depleted at an alarming rate, and pollution and global warming continue to worsen. While it can all seem distant and overwhelming, the solution to each of these issues actually lies within each of us. Our actions today can create change. Our daily decisions do have an impact on the world at large.

Harnessing the power of wind and sun is not only possible by most people, but it’s increasingly affordable and easy to set up. But before discussing ways to harness wind and solar energy, it’s very important to note that, the first step to start, is by changing our behaviour. Right now, even though renewable energy is not exactly cheap and often not very accessible in its current state, there are still plenty of ways you can cut down on energy costs. Here are just a few:

•  Turn off your appliances when you’re not using them. Computers and televisions continue to use energy even when they’re in standby mode.

•  Instead of always using your dryer or dishwasher, consider air-drying your clothes and dishes at least some of the time, and only run your dishwasher, dryer, or washing machine with full loads.

•  Use energy-efficient fluorescent lightbulbs in your household lamps.

•  Set your thermostat at a comfortable but moderate temperature – not too warm in the winter, not too cool in the summer.

•  Take shorter showers and avoid baths.

•  Maintain your vehicle – regular tune-ups insure that you get maximum fuel efficiency. When you drive, be aware that excessive speeds and rapidly accelerating and braking uses more gas.

•  Seal your windows and doors. Preventing warm or cool air from escaping will make a significant difference in your utility costs.

If you are seriously considering using renewable energy sources like wind or solar power to heat and cool your home, then you MUST implement the suggestions above. There’s simply no value in using a wind or solar generator if you continue to leave lights and appliances on when not in use, use more water than is necessary, etc.

Other Useful Links

Alternative energy deal links

Alternative Energy

Alternative Building

Valuable Coupon Deals

IdeamanInk.com

Page designed by IdeamanInk.com© 2011

Speak Your Mind

*