Jan 20 2011
03:58 am

This looks interesting. Melting snow, ice, providing heat and electricity. Could TDOT get behind this sort of project?

A couple of different approaches.

Electricity generated by the highway could be used to recharge electric vehicles and to power lights and LED warning signs along the road itself.

In fact, Brusaw believes that solar roadways -- if widely accepted -- could eventually generate clean electricity around the world, eliminating the need for fossil fuels and saving the planet from global climate change.

"Think about it, we have more than 3 million miles of highways exposed to sunlight, so if we can harness this energy, it's free, and you don't need photovoltaic solar cells," said Mallick.


Even a warm weather city like Miami, Florida, could benefit from temperature-regulated pavements. The Worcester project estimates that every 50 meters of pipe embedded in Miami pavement would cost $12,500 to construct, $1,000 a year to maintain and would yield enough annual energy from its heat to power 55 homes for a month.

In six years, the smart pavement would pay for itself in energy production and savings, according to research by Mallick and his colleagues.

The CNN article


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