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Introduction to Solar Roadways

Posted by Infra on Thursday, November 6th, 2014

Written by Brian Tooby and orginally posted on AirToob

Solar Roadways: Viral Video

If you have seen this viral video, you will know that Julie and Scott Brusaw have grabbed the imagination of several million people, with an invention that could benefit the lives of hundreds of times that number.

If you haven’t seen it, there’s no time like the present!

When I saw it, several questions occurred to me about things such as cost, practicality, durability, traction and (a bit later) the effect of dirt covering, power generation/distribution, and several more. Believe me when I say that every question that I had, and a whole lot more that I hadn’t thought of, have been answered here (or click the question-mark image below right).

Here’s a small selection of questions from a large number that have already been answered (and whose answers are kept current as the project evolves) – click a question to read the current answer:

What are you going to do about traction? What’s going to happen to the surface of the Solar Roadways when it rains?

What about motorcycles and bicycles? Won’t they slip on the glass surface? What about strollers, skates, skateboards, wheelchairs, etc.?

Can your Solar Roadways handle US Army tanks? (Short version: easily)

If a parking lot is full of cars or a highway has lots of traffic, how are they going to produce any energy?

How will snow melt/water be dispersed?

Would you have to rip up perfectly good roads and parking lots to install your system?

Why don’t you start with something easier like sidewalks, driveways or parking lots before installing roads? (SV: that’s the plan!)

Wouldn’t it make more sense to just build canopies over the roads to hold the solar panels? That way, we wouldn’t have to be able to drive on them?

What will an earthquake do to a Solar Roadway? Or the EMP from a nuclear blast?

What will you do with your funding from Indiegogo? Are you going to do some projects?
— (and see the current list of interested customers who have allowed their names to be disclosed, which includes NASA’s Kennedy Space Centre)

Scott Brusaw addressing Google’s “Solve For X” think tank (worth looking at in its own right) in May 2013 – in some ways even more interesting than the viral video

Things have moved on considerably since these videos came out, with a very successful Indie crowd-sourcing exercise funding the next stage. It closed on June 20, 2014, having raised $2.2m, more than twice its target.

The latest news about the Solar Roadways development will be found here, with recent posts on the Internet (in the year leading up to when you actually read this) here.

You may see among those mostly positive posts and articles that the (un)professional nay-sayers and trolls have also crawled out of the woodwork, as apparently they do after every successful Indie campaign.

Rather than rant about this particularly idiotic and destructive sub-species of the human race (especially prevalent in the USA, for some reason, home of great enterprise, innovation and engineering), I can simply point you at this:

Solar Roads: Responding to Critics

View full post (AirToob) – Solar Roads: Introduction

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