Solar roads; Yes, you read that right. Es la propuesta en la que trabajan ya en Alemania para sacar todavía más provecho a las instalaciones solares que, con esta idea, no solo captarían energía limpia, sino que solventarían la todavía insuficiente autonomía de los vehículos eléctricos que, sobrese est vías recías, In progress.

The idea is not as green as you might think and, in fact, has already been successfully tested on cycle and hiking trails. But the objective goes further: that they can be implemented on this type of road, on sidewalks, but also on roads where vehicles circulate. A team led by the Start German Solmove and by the RWTH Aachen University, which has taken many steps so that solar roads can be implemented in the near future.

How would the system work?

Basically, it is about creating a new photovoltaic solar panel which, to be effective, must be resistant but also easily installable. Thus, this approach consists of 8 × 8 centimeter glass tiles, with solar cells integrated and incorporated into a network. These small pieces, about 5 millimeters wide, they are placed on the surface to be covered as if it were a carpet.

This design translates into something key: the roads would not need major changes to become solar, but only this system should be deployed there. Its use, say the promoters, “It has a lot more potential than installing roof panels”. They guarantee it with a very clear idea in mind: these systems allow electric vehicles on the move to be recharged using induction loops.

Although the proponents of this solution recognize that it will perform better on low-traffic roads than on high-traffic ones (mainly due to the arrival of the sun on the roadway), they do not believe that solar soils can. suffer. In fact, they claim that the useful life of its components is 25 years, which would exceed even that of paved roads. In addition, once the panels are removed, the operation would be as simple as installation and the system could be recycled in a specialized plant.

As proponents of this idea move forward with their testing, the design already promises other benefits, such as possibility of lighting the road with LED lights, equipment self-cleaning, acoustic optimization or the fight against ice caps in winter, thanks to the energy captured from the sun by the road itself.

In Germany there are more than 1,400 million square meters of horizontal surfaces. This immense space, they assure from this project, “It could be used to generate electricity and supply power to 20 million electric cars” who still have limited autonomy and excessive dependence on charging stations.

More information in Solmove.