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 Post subject: Solar Roadways
PostPosted: Sat May 24, 2014 1:01 am 
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Will probably never happen... but it would be cool. I think Solar is the future, just not sure how far in the future.


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 Post subject: Re: Solar Roadways
PostPosted: Sat May 24, 2014 8:43 am 
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Please let this happen. Now I just need a lightbike, and I'll be set.

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 Post subject: Re: Solar Roadways
PostPosted: Sat May 24, 2014 11:22 am 
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Cool, but I'll be surprised if it catches on. Step 1 would be to try to get all of the rich Hollywood types to suck it up and spend the cash to convert their own private mansion driveways to this stuff. Once it's seen in action (especially by famous, popular people) it at least has a chance to catch on.

The video didn't seem to mention cost. I wonder how much more it costs per mile of this stuff compared to a mile of asphalt. 10x more? 100x more? 1000x more? And what's the return on investment in terms of energy?

Converting your roof to solar panels is also a cool pro-green energy thing you can do and that never really caught on either. Some people have them but it's hardly widespread, and that's been an option for like 30 years. Based on the failure of roof panels (mainly, I guess, due to cost), I have a hard time seeing road panels as catching on. One of those "awesome idea! someone else should pay for it!" things.

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 Post subject: Re: Solar Roadways
PostPosted: Sat May 24, 2014 11:44 am 
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panels using silicon will never happen in large applications like this, price is way too high. There are many lower cost alternatives to make stuff more like tape or paintable material but they still havent caught on.

Orson, how bout this?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1_6JPjd ... page#t=125

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 Post subject: Re: Solar Roadways
PostPosted: Sat May 24, 2014 1:21 pm 
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I don't think rich guys converting their driveways will do it, but Google or Apple or someone like that doing all of their parking would be a good start.

Im skeptical about it as well but have been following them for years and hope it happens.

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 Post subject: Re: Solar Roadways
PostPosted: Sat May 24, 2014 3:10 pm 
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My thought on rich (and famous) people doing it is that it's kinda like those stupid gigantic sunglasses everyone wears -- as I understand it, Hollywood people started using them to try and hide their identity when going out in public. People saw their favorite actors/actresses wearing stupid giant sunglasses so they wanted stupid giant sunglasses too!

If it becomes fashionable to own something (see also: Apple crap), people will try to own it.

Granted if it costs $100,000 to pave a small driveway in solar panels then maybe it doesn't matter anyway.

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 Post subject: Re: Solar Roadways
PostPosted: Sun May 25, 2014 8:20 pm 
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Yea, cool concept, but think about the size of our highway system. Iowa alone has 9000 miles of main highways. Let alone the concrete and asphalt lobbyist will pull out all the stops:-).

Interesting thing about solar is that the current tech using silicon is so inefficient. But they have identified new materials that are mush more effective. New solar tech will use small collectors with concentrated beams into much more efficient material.

This is what we need. Smaller, 75% efficient, and only cost 7k for half the total electricity a house uses. Today that will cost you 30k.

http://www.dvice.com/2014-5-12/home-sol ... lar-panels

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 Post subject: Re: Solar Roadways
PostPosted: Tue May 27, 2014 9:58 am 
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Way too expensive. We have had the ability to run energy in our roads for over a century and it became novel for a reason.


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 Post subject: Re: Solar Roadways
PostPosted: Tue May 27, 2014 11:53 am 
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Vllad wrote:
Way too expensive. We have had the ability to run energy in our roads for over a century and it became novel for a reason.


Well, the goal is a good one, so if cost is the constraint, then finding a cost-effective way to do this is the focus (or should be).

I also wonder if just harnessing the energy from the downward force of the vehicles on the road (or the movement of the vehicles on the road) itself isn't a better methodology.

Hell, I imagine you could create a gigantic electromagnet by put putting a copper conducter on all cars, and then create copper tunnels to drive through on major highways. I wonder if that would work.

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 Post subject: Re: Solar Roadways
PostPosted: Tue May 27, 2014 11:58 am 
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I just had another thought. How about turbines to capture the thrust from planes on take off. Should be enough energy to power a lot of the airport energy consumption - just need to ensure the momentum from one plane carries over to the next.

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 Post subject: Re: Solar Roadways
PostPosted: Tue May 27, 2014 12:17 pm 
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I think there are a ton of things like this that could be used. I have always wondered why they don't have some sort of wind power on cars. I mean most cars have air intakes for either the engines or the breaks, why couldn't there be something put inside there that spins to create power for the car? I'm no engineer (or whatever degree it takes to build this stuff or make it make sense) but there is a ton of energy in automobiles that goes unused. The idea that most hybrids are using the breaks to get energy is cool, but why not use the energy of the car while it's moving as well? Or some sort of turbine that runs in the wheels of the cars so when the wheels spin, they create power.

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 Post subject: Re: Solar Roadways
PostPosted: Tue May 27, 2014 12:29 pm 
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It's hard to use energy to make energy. In order to use wind to spin a prop to create energy you have to create drag on the prop to spin it, which also creates drag on the car which forces the car to consume more energy.

And cars already use exhaust to create energy. .. it's called a turbo charger.

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 Post subject: Re: Solar Roadways
PostPosted: Tue May 27, 2014 12:51 pm 
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A simple thing like friction typically cost more energy to overcome. Other than the cold fusion rainbow their are very few things that create enough energy to run themselves. Even with Nuke power they still create steam to turn turbines or we require wind or water to generate power.


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 Post subject: Re: Solar Roadways
PostPosted: Sun Feb 15, 2015 2:32 pm 
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Why not small solar panels on all the power/telephone poles? What is stopping the panels from sending their power into the line less than a foot below them?
... why not also put up cell phone repeaters/ or mini-towers on telephone poles. Renting the space would help landlines survive a bit longer, no? Here in Vermont there still massive dead spaces for cell coverage.

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 Post subject: Re: Solar Roadways
PostPosted: Tue Feb 17, 2015 4:25 am 
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Cell coverage in rural or remote areas is already done by pole mounted repeaters. Not sure why Vermont is so far behind. I'm guessing it's money related. On the drive from Sacremento to Lake Tahoe there are pole repeaters all the way so even the less populated areas have great coverage. But I'm pretty sure Lake Tahoe money has a lot to do with it.

As for solar, nuclear, wave generator and wind tech . they are currently All to expensive to be effective methods privately utilized in our aging carbon based infrastructure. Sure your seeing windmills pop up. But if the gov wasn't recently mandating their use you wouldn't be seeing them either. I think Vllad put it best in another thread here. Basically we'll never see serious infrastructure reform and upgrades in a capitalistic system until we burn up every last carbon source we can get our hands on first. Our system is just so geared to carbon it's going to cost serious $'s to the first poor schmucks who try to change it. Once it's changed costs could come down. But no ones going to offer up the money as it a guaranteed loss to any private industry. If we wait long enough the government will have to pay for it and every power and utility service provider knows it. The tech is there and they even own the patents already. Their just waiting on someone else to pony up the money.

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 Post subject: Re: Solar Roadways
PostPosted: Fri May 13, 2016 10:09 am 
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To continue with this concept. Instead of solar, why not a some form of hydraulic/pressure based power generation? Using the weight of vehicles crossing an intersection to pump pressure to a roadside turbine of sorts? I am no engineer, but wouldn't the stop and go of a typical 4-way intersection create a wave-like pressure to push fluids past some turbine like thing, lol...

An intersection implementation would keep it manageable and not require entire roadway commitment and maintenance. I am picturing something like concrete covered steel plates that give ever so much. Obviously fitted for the climate being used. Concrete in New England doesn't have a good record on the roads.

The truck I drive, regularly is holding 20-24 ton (70-75k lbs gross), and take into account a typical log truck holding more than that and the potential for pressure generated power seems a nice way for these big rigs to "give back", lol. It seems a waste to not make use of that amount of pressure potential.

Haha.

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 Post subject: Re: Solar Roadways
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2016 1:00 am 
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Link


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It won’t be long before visitors to Jeff Jones Town Square will be taking a step into the future.

The city of Sandpoint announced Friday that the Idaho Department of Commerce approved a $48,734 grant to set up a Solar Roadways demonstration project within city limits. The Gem State grant, which is set up by the state to promote economic development in rural communities, will fund the installation of Solar Roadways panels on the concrete area near the fountain. For Sandpoint city administrator Jennifer Stapleton, the project is an exciting opportunity to showcase a locally grown business that has attracted global attention through successful crowdfunding campaigns and viral videos.

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