"Park your car over there, on that solar panel."

Sept. 29, 2009
Solar Road Panels are meant to replace petroleum-based asphalt on roads and in parking lots.

An Idaho-based startup called Solar Roadways aims to build a prototype of its Solar Road Panel, made from solar cells and glass, that is meant to replace asphalt on roads and in parking lots.

The 12x12-foot panels are designed to be embedded into roads and are said to generate 7.6 kW-h of power daily. Assuming this electricity could be pumped into the grid, Solar Roadways figures a four-lane, one-mile stretch of its panels could generate enough power for 500 homes. This would not be cheap, however. Each panel is expected to go for a little under $7,000, at least initially.

Solar Road panels also contain embedded LEDs that show road lines from beneath for safer nighttime driving. The LEDs could also be programmed to alert drivers of detours or road construction ahead, and can even sense wildlife on the road and warn drivers to slow down. (Or, we might suppose, tell deer hunters to take aim.)

The inventors say in the future, electric vehicles could recharge along the roadway and in panel-equipped parking lots.

Physorg.com picked up the story here:


And here is Solar Roadways' site:


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