Home Page
   Articles
       links
About Us    
Traders        
Recipes            
Latest Articles
solar roadways crowd funding
Page Previous  1, 2
 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Downsizer Forum Index -> Small Business Questions, Ideas and Advice
Author 
 Message
sueshells



Joined: 20 Jan 2009
Posts: 690
Location: North Bucks
PostPosted: Sun May 25, 14 10:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Looks like an awesome idea.

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 32126
Location: yes
PostPosted: Mon May 26, 14 12:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

a better idea than some big energy projects and we get roads where the potholes get mended

Aeolienne



Joined: 03 Apr 2008
Posts: 1455
Location: Leamington Spa, Warks
PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 17 11:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Pardon my ignorance, but how well do solar cells function when they're made dirty by tyre tracks?

Nick



Joined: 02 Nov 2004
Posts: 33357
Location: Hereford
PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 17 8:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

http://solarroadways.com/Research/Research

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 32126
Location: yes
PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 17 12:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

i recon i would have used rude words upon discovering i had fried 640 chips

the output per lane mile is pretty good, what it needs now is a full scale trial in the real world of road surfaces to discover the weak points.

Slim



Joined: 05 Mar 2006
Posts: 4244
Location: New England (In the US of A)
PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 17 12:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I'm glad they're trying stuff out.

But I think we're all right in keeping a critical eye.

I've always been a bit skeptical of the idea, particularly as more efficient solar set-ups don't require all that much surface area of the world, if we were to have proper energy transmittance infrastructure (which the Chinese might start advancing).

Not a confidence booster that the findings of their research work stops in 2015.....

Also, this bit:
Quote:
Each full size hexagon panel measures four square feet, so there would be 15,840 panels per lane mile using a 12-foot wide lane. If each four of these produced 52397Wh in six months, then the same four would theoretically produce 104,794Wh per year.[emphasis mine] That's 26.1985kWh per year each. Multiply that by 15,840 panels, and the road would produce 414.984MWh per year per lane mile. This is with only 69-percent solar cell coverage. With 100-percent coverage, the output would be 601.426MWh per year per lane mile.


Is not very heartening to me. They're not specifying which six months they're multiplying off of. If it's the winter months, than great, the production will be even higher. But it seems like they're most likely to be taking summer months' production and just doubling it and painting a very overly optimistic picture. Now add short winter days, traffic (and its shading), and dust, and snow, and salt.

Their testing involves temperature swings, and "freezing it in a block of ice". As someone from an area with actual harsh winters, that doesn't cut it. These roads don't get frozen in a static block of ice, they have water seeping in to every nook and cranny and freezing, then being pushed around with plows and melting and freezing again, and salt corroding every bit of metal. There is a reason you don't find many old cars in New England - if they weren't garaged every winter they rust away!

Anyhoo, there's my skeptical rant. Really do hope they make advances that are useful for their own purposes (clearly there are many locales that don't have tough winters like mine), as well as advances that are useful for other developments (maybe they make a really solid modular roof tile design out of their product - though solar city may have beat them to the punch)

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 32126
Location: yes
PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 17 12:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

the jump from semi tech lab scale to full scale real world operation is often a steep learning and redesign curve.

as you say the interlocking style might well be applied to roof tiles etc avoiding the loads,salt etc that a road surfaces entails.

Slim



Joined: 05 Mar 2006
Posts: 4244
Location: New England (In the US of A)
PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 17 12:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Their debut doesn't instill much confidence either, unfortunately:

http://solarroadways.com/Blog/Show?b=4

I realize that any startup has a big hurdle to get past before proving viability, and you need to push boundaries to make real advances. But I'm afraid I think the value here will be in the lessons from their work, rather than the dreams of the creators....

gregotyn



Joined: 24 Jun 2010
Posts: 1208
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: 4244
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: 1208
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 poad 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.

jema
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 26441
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: 7987

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: 1208
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: 7987

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.

Post new topic   Reply to topic    Downsizer Forum Index -> Small Business Questions, Ideas and Advice All times are GMT
Page Previous  1, 2
Page 2 of 2
View Latest Posts View Latest Posts

 

Archive
Powered by php-BB © 2001, 2005 php-BB Group
Style by marsjupiter.com, released under GNU (GNU/GPL) license.
Copyright 2004 marsjupiter.com

<-- -->