VIDEO | Where Solar Panel Meets Road
Electrical engineer Scott Brusaw has been dreaming of solar roadways since the 60s and now through the advancement of cheaper technology and two government funded prototypes his dream is lighting up.
Brusaw wants to revolutionise the way we make roads changing ever more expensive oil based tarmac to money and power generating solar panelled roads.
The highways are every geeks paradise; the design is brimming with technology from solar panels to LED road markings heaters to melt snow and an underground section for cables and rainwater.
We can use [photovoltaic panels] to create roads parking lots tarmacsanything under the sun Brusaw says. All of the current asphalt and concrete currently soaking up the sun can be covered with our technology to turn that sunlight into clean renewable electricity.
Scott has taken years of meticulous planning and ideas to the judgement of the public using the crowd sourced funding platform Indiegogo to raise $1million. And to his credit has convinced 5160 funders to contribute $252403 towards his goal through value based perks ranging from a thank you video ($10) to a 7 inch glass hexagon ($10000) from the final design.
Neil Fromer executive director of the Resnick Sustainability Institute at the California Institute of Technology is sceptical: The regulatory challenges of putting solar panels on rooftops were significant over the last 20 or 30 years he said. Its only an avalanche [of effort] that managed to get it really working so doing the roads would be a big challenge.