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Reload this Page Fixing the roads, changing America
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slogg
VeteranXX
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Old
41 - 01-19-2011, 16:13
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the parking lot idea seems like the best option, if it could generate enough power to sustain the building it is attached to

I dont think solar cells can do more than light up a stop sign from what I've seen though
 
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JudgeU
VeteranXV
Old
42 - 01-19-2011, 16:29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Goshin View Post
high speed data connections to every home and business, new power lines (very hugely needed) to every home and business, mainly from power that was created/contained miles from the home (no huge long distance transmission for most power requirements since the powerplant is the road next to your house),
easy drop and play pre-fab 12x12 roadways, much safer roads that can change the LEDS to let you know about accidents in x lane (no more cones and long traffic delays of removing said cones), and to light the roads an lane markings, and a way to charge your electric car while driving

high upfront cost (maybe), huge long term gain

huge
Even if we did it for major cities only and then strands out for highways, leaving most rural roads alone, we'd see a big impact
It all sounds good, but the biggest hit against solar has always been storage. If you don't use electricity the moment it's created it's gone. And most of all electricity is used at night when solar has no effect.

The next big leap in tech advancement will come when we can produce an awesome power storage. Until then renewable energy will take a backseat.
 
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Stealth
VeteranXV
Old
43 - 01-19-2011, 16:33
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Originally Posted by JudgeU View Post

The next big leap in tech advancement will come when we can produce an awesome power storage. Until then renewable energy will take a backseat.
and after decades of trying, we can't seem to achieve a significant breakthrough in this area. Until this happens, we're ducks sitting in the water.
 
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max
VeteranXV
Old
44 - 01-19-2011, 17:18
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Snow plow unions will be against this.
 
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Machine
VeteranXX
Old
45 - 01-19-2011, 17:23
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Originally Posted by Kerosene31 View Post
$4.4 million per mile? Yeah it isn't like that is prohibitively expensive or anything in the least.
dumb****, do you even know how much a mile of highway costs?
 
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CombatWombat
VeteranXV
Old
46 - 01-19-2011, 17:38
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We can't even keep the asphalt from falling apart 2 weeks after they lay it down around here.
 
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Machine
VeteranXX
Old
47 - 01-19-2011, 17:41
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Originally Posted by Goshin View Post
the idea has been designed
they're building the prototype to be installed this spring

try again

sorry but the fact that the guy had to be told by the govt that it'd be easier to start with parking lots instead of roads shows what a dumbass he (and there for, his idea) is.
 
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Goshin
VeteranXX
Old
48 - 01-19-2011, 17:48
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government wants the product tested before putting it down on roads

as a prototype, i dont see anything wrong with this approach
dude said it would be ready for high scale manufacturing (hey manufacturing jobs in america!) in 2020 or something

did i mention buried power lines means no more windstorms/blizzards kicking our **** in?

I realize a lot of power is used at night. I wouldn't say most of it is though. Think about the amount of energy companies need to sustain activities throughout the day

anyway, maybe there is a battery bank attached to the road somewhere

i'll dig up some more info, i havent reviewed it in over a year

 
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Machine
VeteranXX
Old
49 - 01-19-2011, 18:00
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There are plenty of power lines already in the ground. You dont need a whole ****ing road to bury a 6 inch electrical conduit. Any new city will already have underground power because it's not the 1800s anymore.

What makes more sense? Putting a solar panel where 10 cars will drive on it a day (parking lot), or where 1000 cars will drive on it?
 
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Data
VeteranXX
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Old
50 - 01-19-2011, 18:07
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Roads are the least of our worries.
 
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DocHolliday
VeteranXX
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Old
51 - 01-19-2011, 18:28
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Just an FYI there is a reason night time is considered off-peak hours.

EDIT: First read about this in Popsci. This is one of those projects I am pulling for. Could change the world.

EDIT EDIT: Glass research has taken on new meaning the past decade and the advances we are seeing is making this all a possibility. Glass is much stronger and more versatile then most people think.
 
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Last edited by DocHolliday; 01-19-2011 at 18:41..
Eggi
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Old
52 - 01-19-2011, 18:38
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Originally Posted by Goshin View Post
I realize a lot of power is used at night. I wouldn't say most of it is though. Think about the amount of energy companies need to sustain activities throughout the day
look up peak power usage hot shot

one of the biggest problems that energy companies deal with is peak power usage (in the evenings when everyone is at home and want their lights on). They have to overdesign their power plants to deal with this because there is no good way to store energy in order to satisfy peak demand.
 
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Goshin
VeteranXX
Old
53 - 01-19-2011, 18:39
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The road itself, and power storage
Quote:
The Solar Roadway is a series of structurally-engineered solar panels that are driven upon. The idea is to replace all current petroleum-based asphalt roads, parking lots, and driveways with Solar Road Panels that collect energy to be used by our homes and businesses. Our ultimate goal is to be able to store excess energy in or alongside the Solar Roadways. This renewable energy replaces the need for the current fossil fuels used for the generation of electricity. This, in turn, cuts greenhouse gases literally in half.

damaged roads
Quote:
For example, let's say lighting strikes the road and does some significant damage: a hole is blown clean through a Solar Road Panel***8482; in the middle of an eight-lane highway. Let's go even deeper and say that a path to ground has been created and massive amounts of current attempt to drain through the damaged panel. Each side of each Solar Road Panel***8482; is equipped with a GFI (Ground Fault Interrupter), which would shut off as soon as a current surge was detected by the microprocessors in the undamaged neighboring panels. The lightning damaged panel would be electrically isolated and the surrounding panels could toggle the LEDs bordering the damaged panel. This would "paint" a square around the damaged panel to warn drivers of the danger. Oncoming drivers would be warned of the brief detour. No power outage - not even a disruption of service to any electrical customers.

The third objective is isolation. If failures were to occur, the whole network would break into isolated ***8220;islands,***8221; each of which must fend for itself. Each island would reorganize its power plants and transmission flows as best it could.

This objective isn't necessary with the Solar Roadways***8482;, albeit certainly possible. The roadway is the power plant and the transmission line. If a tanker truck blows up and severs a road completely in half, no power is lost anywhere (except for the damaged panels). Electricity will just go around on a different road, in the same manner that a vehicle would during a detour. Again, the undamaged neighboring panels would disconnect from the damaged panels and call the problem in.
making money
Quote:
There is a much better way. Imagine a highway infrastructure that relieves the financial obligations of the federal and state governments (taxpayers) and instead pays for itself. The Solar Roadways will generate electricity - up to three times more than the entire U.S. currently uses (see Numbers). The electricity generated pays for the Solar Roadways. Additional revenue can be acquired by leasing the conduit within the Solar Roadways to service providers such as the telephone, cable TV, and high-speed internet industries.

The nation's highway transportation system includes 3.8 million miles of roadways and 582,000 bridges. Significantly, the highway system supports 86 percent of all our citizens' personal travel, moves 80 percent of the nation's freight (based on value), and serves as a key component in national defense mobility. Despite widespread redundancies, there are critical junctures with limited capacity for additional traffic. Freight volume is projected to double by 2020, stretching our ability to manage limited capacity and growing security concerns.
lit up roads
Quote:
Unlike the dark roads we drive on by night today, the Solar Roadways will have LEDs which will "paint" the lanes, and can be instantly customized as needed.

Many people tell us that they, like us, have trouble seeing the road lines at night, particularly when the oncoming headlights are blinding them or when it's raining. With an illuminated highway, accidents will be reduced and nighttime driving will be safer for all.

This is an area in England where solar road studs light up the lines on the road at night. A recent study showed that they reduced night time accidents by 70%.
water management?
Quote:
We received about 130 inches of snow two years ago here in northern Idaho. While we dreamed of having Solar Road Panels heating our driveway, we realized that just melting the snow wouldn't be enough: the resulting water would just run off the sides of the heated surface, refreeze, and lift the panels through what's known as heaving. In short, it would damage our new driveway.

A solution had to be found to remove or relocate the runoff water. We consulted with some water and forestry experts on the matter. We learned that if we could move water just 200 miles, then we could virtually eliminate any drought conditions in the U.S. In our research, we also learned of the damage caused by contaminated stormwater entering our waterways.

We're experimenting with a solution to relocate stormwater. First, to a water treatment facility, where necessary. Then, to whatever location the filtered water is needed.

After particulates are filtered out by something similar to a French drain, the storm water is stored below ground in storage tanks where it can't freeze. When it reaches a certain level, it is pumped along the Solar Roadway though a series of check valves (controls the direction of the water - for instance, north or south) to the water treatment facility. Once treated, the clean water is then pumped through a similar system along the Solar Roadway to the desired locations such as agricultural centers and aquifers.
not sure about that one, but if they can prove it works..cool

on big brothering us

Quote:
Imagine what you can do with this kind of control: the dashed road lines that you see on highways can "travel" alongside you at the designated speed limit. If your car is moving faster than the lines, you are going too fast. If your car is being passed by the line, you're driving too slowly. You can maintain the proper speed while never having to look at your speedometer.

The road can warn you of traffic congestion ahead and even recommend detours around it. You can enter a destination into your onboard GPS and an arrow can appear in the road directly ahead of your vehicle to "lead" you there, rather than audibly describing how to get to your destination.

If a vehicle crosses the center line too many times within a given distance, a ring of LEDs can be drawn around the vehicle, which will travel with it indefinitely. This will warn other drivers of a potential danger and will alert law enforcement officials of a potential problem. It may just be someone tuning their radio, eating a Big Mac, reading a map, or applying makeup (we've seen all of these), but it may also be an impaired driver on his/her way to taking out a family of four. The Solar Roadways could drastically reduce the number of deaths/injuries caused by impaired driving. This too, ought to result in lowered insurance rates for all of us.
airports
Quote:
Think of all the unused surface area on an airport tarmac: The embedded LEDs of the Solar Road Panels could be used to paint runway lines and numbers and spell out instructions to pilots. This could all be controlled and updated in real time by air traffic and ground traffic controllers.
being a consumer
Quote:
Businesses will be able to have solar parking lots, which will enable them to quickly go off grid as well as offer their customers the convenience of allowing their electric vehicles to recharge while they are shopping, eating, etc. They will no longer have the expense of snow removal. Their parking lots will be safer at night with the light provided by the LED's. The LED painted parking lot lines will also be customizable at the touch of a button, whenever the business has a need to change their parking configuration. This "intelligent parking lot" will enable businesses to collect needed data to improve their services.

Homeowners will be able to enjoy going off grid with solar driveways along with another important benefit: no more plowing or shoveling snow. A solar driveway will have many features, including LED lit address markers and the ability to add customized wording, such as "Happy Birthday Heather!" or "Wedding reception here".
the layers
Quote:
Road Surface Layer - translucent and high-strength, it is rough enough to provide great traction, yet still passes sunlight through to the solar collector cells embedded within, along with LEDs and a heating element. It is capable of handling today's heaviest loads under the worst of conditions. Weatherproof, it protects the electronics layer beneath it.

Electronics Layer Contains a microprocessor board with support circuitry for sensing loads on the surface and controlling a heating element. No more snow/ice removal and no more school/business closings due to inclement weather. The on-board microprocessor controls lighting, communications, monitoring, etc. With a communications device every 12 feet, the Solar Roadway is an intelligent highway system.

Base Plate LayerLayer - While the electronics layer collects energy from the sun, it is the base plate layer that distributes power (collected from the electronics layer) and data signals (phone, TV, internet, etc.) "downline" to all homes and businesses connected to the Solar Roadway. Weatherproof, it protects the electronics layer above it.


Quote:
We're aware that this won't happen overnight. We'll need to start off small: driveways, bike paths, patios, sidewalks, parking lots, playgrounds, etc. This is where we'll learn our lessons and perfect our system. Once the lessons have been learned and the bugs have all been resolved, we'll plan to move out onto public roads.
how to keep clean?
Quote:
How are you going to keep the surface clean?

While at the International Workshop on Scientific Challenges for New Functionalities in Glass, Scott learned of a new technology: self-cleaning glass. From Wikipedia: Self-cleaning glass is a specific type of glass with a surface which keeps itself free of dirt and grime through natural processes. The glass cleans itself in two stages: the photocatalytic stage of the process breaks down the organic dirt on the glass using ultraviolet in sunlight (even on overcast days) and makes the glass hydrophilic (normally glass is hydrophobic). During the following hydrophilic state, rain washes away the dirt leaving almost no streaks, because hydrophilic glass spreads the water evenly over its surface.

It is yet to be seen if this process will be enough to keep the Solar Roadways operating under optimal performance (100% clean surfaces), but it will certainly put a dent in a potential problem. There will be some obvious obstacles such as oil spills, sandstorms, storm debris, etc. Here's the worst case scenario: if all else fails, we can replace snow plows with street sweepers (vehicles with large rotating brushes). They're used here in Idaho in the spring to clear the roads of the sand that was used for traction during the winter months. Again, this is worst case and only if the self-cleaning properties of the glass aren't enough to do the entire job.
Energy conversion at15% effeciency
Quote:
According to a 2007 study by the Energy Information Administration, the average American home used 936kWh per month. Dividing this number by 30 will give us an average need of 31.2kWh per day. Dividing this number into the 13.376MWhr per mile, gives us approximately 428. That's how many American homes can go "off-grid" for every mile of 4-lane Solar Roadway. We can wean ourselves off coal. Again, that's based on four hours of sunlight per day
and read this
Solar Roadways - The Numbers
and maybe the faq page

pretty fast reading

 
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SpicyMcHaggis
VeteranX
Old
54 - 01-19-2011, 18:55
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what about when terrorists attack by stealing a road-painting truck and setting it to wide-spray?!??!




OUR POWER INFRASTRUCTURE WOULD NEED TO BE DEFENDED 24/7!!!!
 
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{FSC}Godfather
VeteranXV
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Old
55 - 01-19-2011, 19:15
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the night time, and night time in rain stuff would be great for sure
 
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LordMelkor
Veteran4
Old
56 - 01-19-2011, 19:18
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Originally Posted by JudgeU View Post
It all sounds good, but the biggest hit against solar has always been storage. If you don't use electricity the moment it's created it's gone. And most of all electricity is used at night when solar has no effect.

The next big leap in tech advancement will come when we can produce an awesome power storage. Until then renewable energy will take a backseat.
Uh... it's called a capacitor... Do you think all the electricity is used up the moment it's produced at a power plant (Coal, Nuclear, Gas, or otherwise)?
 
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Machine
VeteranXX
Old
57 - 01-19-2011, 19:51
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the whole solar highway pitch just sounds like some **** a 15 year old overachiever would dream up.
 
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mangaboy
VeteranXV
Old
58 - 01-19-2011, 21:29
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Originally Posted by LordMelkor View Post
Uh... it's called a capacitor... Do you think all the electricity is used up the moment it's produced at a power plant (Coal, Nuclear, Gas, or otherwise)?
Capacitor != battery, you'd need giant capacitors to store any meaningful amounts.
 
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LordMelkor
Veteran4
Old
59 - 01-20-2011, 08:01
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Originally Posted by mangaboy View Post
Capacitor != battery, you'd need giant capacitors to store any meaningful amounts.
You're retarded.
 
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Mantua
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Old
60 - 01-20-2011, 08:01
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goshin, have you ever lived anywhere cold enough to see frost heaves in the road?
it's like a speed bump, only 8" high and 2' wide

i can see this working in the south, but not anywhere that has different seasons
 
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