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solar roadways crowd funding
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gregotyn



Joined: 24 Jun 2010
Posts: 1423
Location: Llanfyllin area
PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 17 2:55 pm    Post subject:  Reply with quote    

I haven't read the all gen, but if as I understand it, the road way is to generate electricity all year, then surely in the winter that "juice" could be used to save salting the roads? The amount of solar in winter is obviously limited, but 'they' tell me even a dull day will generate power albeit reduced. Now anything which saves salt being spread and rotting vehicles has to be all good? I expect my theory to be shot down.

Slim



Joined: 05 Mar 2006
Posts: 4692
Location: New England (In the US of A)
PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 17 3:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

gregotyn wrote:
I haven't read the all gen, but if as I understand it, the road way is to generate electricity all year, then surely in the winter that "juice" could be used to save salting the roads? The amount of solar in winter is obviously limited, but 'they' tell me even a dull day will generate power albeit reduced. Now anything which saves salt being spread and rotting vehicles has to be all good? I expect my theory to be shot down.


Let's just play it out.
Here's my guess:
If the roads are snow covered (and maybe more of a problem: at night which is maybe 2/3 - 3/4 of the short winter day) there is no light for PV production, so any time there is heavy snow the power is coming from elsewhere on the grid to heat them so that they can produce PV power again. It would be electric resistance heat, which is a fairly big energy draw. Especially since the evaporating snow/ice melt will be cooling the road surface at the same time.
It would require some sort of monitoring to know when to turn on (maybe any temp near or below freezing with the presence of moisture?)

I definitely like the idea of abandoning salting roads, and I really want to see more solar get installed everywhere.

However, this just seems like a difficult way to do solar in general.

I guess I'm just more of the opinion:
"let's put solar on top of all of our existing many acres of parking lots and parking garages before we try to completely re-invent our road infrastructure"

gregotyn



Joined: 24 Jun 2010
Posts: 1423
Location: Llanfyllin area
PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 17 2:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Thankyou for your reply, Slim, I am learning!
I don't think any new build in the UK today should have other than solar heating for water, space heating if practical and massive amounts of insulation to save heat losses, maximizing as much heat as possible.
I take the point about the use for the snow on the roads sort of catch 22. But to illuminate all car parks and roadways with solar is something within our grasp now, just need the finance to be put in place. I have seen some road signage in one or two places illuminated with solar, so there is some progress. I can't remember where-just thought at the time what a good idea.

Last edited by gregotyn on Fri Mar 31, 17 1:55 pm; edited 1 time in total

jema
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 26559
Location: escaped from Swindon
PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 17 2:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

where do you even start with what new builds aught to have compared to the awful dolls houses that pass for houses these days?

Mistress Rose



Joined: 21 Jul 2011
Posts: 8831

PostPosted: Sat Feb 18, 17 8:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

The only problem with car parks illuminated at ground level is that the light shines upwards. In this area we have an observatory, so everything is downlit. I agree with you about solar water heating Gregotyn, and where possible solar cells on roofs. Insulation is a good idea, but I am always concerned about having to have houses pretty well shut up tight for the winter as it does cause condensation and general fug in a house. I think all houses should have chimneys too, as being able to have a fire in case of electricity failure is a very good idea. The houses next to us have false chimneys. For some reason they thought plastic chimneys on the top looked pretty, but as far as I can see their only use is for pigeons nesting and we have too many of them.

gregotyn



Joined: 24 Jun 2010
Posts: 1423
Location: Llanfyllin area
PostPosted: Sat Feb 18, 17 9:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I have seen at a private car park solar panels on the top of tall lamp standards-solicitors where else?-must have some sort of battery to take it in by day and give it out at night. And solar energy should be made compulsory for all council chambers for lighting to show how much it saves and so they would put it into all their building as an automatic thing just see how little the rates increase then ha ha. Their premises always seem to be with lights on all the time regardless of time of day. The printers next to where I work have covered their roof in solar and I keep meaning to ask if it was worth the cost-or rather how much they have saved.

Mistress Rose



Joined: 21 Jul 2011
Posts: 8831

PostPosted: Sun Feb 19, 17 7:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Several of the road signs in our area that flash to warn you to slow down have a combination solar and wind turbine ( a very little one) on them to provide for the illumination. Most of them seem to work quite well, and it saves having to run a cable to them.

Nick



Joined: 02 Nov 2004
Posts: 33684
Location: Hereford
PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 17 6:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

http://inhabitat.com/france-officially-opens-worlds-first-solar-panel-road/france-wattway/

Slim



Joined: 05 Mar 2006
Posts: 4692
Location: New England (In the US of A)
PostPosted: Sat Mar 11, 17 12:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

It's not looking good for solar roadways

http://dailycaller.com/2017/03/07/americas-first-solar-roadway-is-a-total-disaster/

Admittedly, this is only one company, but then again, they've sucked down 3.9 million in funding, which I personally would rather have seen go to installing panels - which already exist with today's technology and have been proven - on top of roadways, or parking garages, or what have you (or updating the grid to better handle solar generation).

Some choice quotes from this discussion: https://www.reddit.com/r/Futurology/comments/5yp2l0/americas_first_solar_roadway_is_a_total_disaster/

Quote:
"The Road to Hell is paved with Good Intentions."

That saying has been around in one form or another pretty much since the dawn of humanity. Can we stop giving people credit for having good intentions?

These people didn't do their homework, and have taken millions of dollars from taxpayers and gullible optimists. Then other people did the homework for them, and they persevered against the naysayers to continue on and waste more millions of dollars.


Quote:
From another perspective, if anyone tries this again they will have to prove they are better than the precedent that was set by this. There is now undeniable evidence, instead of educated speculation that it is a bad idea or at least needs some major redesign is before it is viably fundable for a reattempt. There could be active data and improvements being made as this is, and always was, a pilot project.


Quote:
Seriously roads are long narrow things you would be surprised how little space it takes to cover the same as a road. If you had a 1km by 1km square that would be equivalent to 166km of a 6m wide road. Even if we take 24 meters for a motorway we still get a lovely 44km of road covered by a 1 by 1 km.

Mistress Rose



Joined: 21 Jul 2011
Posts: 8831

PostPosted: Sun Mar 12, 17 8:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Unfortunately this failure won't do the technology any good. We will have to see if others work better.

jema
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 26559
Location: escaped from Swindon
PostPosted: Sun Mar 12, 17 8:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Making something dual purpose e.g. road and solar is I suppose an odd idea when there is so much roof space going to simple waste.

Slim



Joined: 05 Mar 2006
Posts: 4692
Location: New England (In the US of A)
PostPosted: Sun Mar 12, 17 1:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I guess I just don't see the advantage. We have solar that works very well for generating power (and is constantly being improved with new iterations). It is not designed for being driven over however.

The things that we have designed to be driven over need constant maintenance and replacement, and that's without sensitive electronic components. Why is it being pushed to combine the two and create a whole load of more engineering that needs to be done to try to make something that likely isn't as good at either job as the two individual components on their own?

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 32964
Location: yes
PostPosted: Mon Mar 13, 17 2:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

the good thing is it wasn't very expensive to find out it is not a simple to do as they thought it might be and the idea can rest along with flying cars and teapot hats.

the other good thing is that a few folk might have thought " blahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh would be much better" and be right

Slim



Joined: 05 Mar 2006
Posts: 4692
Location: New England (In the US of A)
PostPosted: Sun Mar 26, 17 3:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

A less pessimistic discussion of a more successful pilot project

http://www.treehugger.com/solar-technology/dutch-solar-bike-path-declared-success-expanding.html

Mistress Rose



Joined: 21 Jul 2011
Posts: 8831

PostPosted: Mon Mar 27, 17 6:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Pavements and cycle paths make more sense than roads as they don't carry such heavy loads. Judging by the complaints of cyclists not using cycle paths round here, it would be a prime test site as they are rarely used.

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