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Old 11-10-2014, 12:50 PM
 
Location: Volcano
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The Dutch don't have unused land to put solar panels on, but they do have 87,000 miles of roads. In what is being hailed as a first-of-its-kind project to test the concept, a section of public bike path has been fitted with solar panels under a glass road surface, and tied in to the grid.

It's a simpler approach than the untested Solar Roadways approach, using solar tiles with LEDs to create lighting and electronic signage, and heating elements to burn off snow, which went viral with their Indiegogo fundraiser a few months ago, and I think that increases this project's chances of success. I think they've also been very smart rolling out this pilot under a bike path, rather than under an automobile roadway, where the stresses would be greater.

It will be interesting to follow their experiences with it.

Quote:
Solar Bike Path Opens In The Netherlands

A Dutch project that integrates solar panels into a bike commuter path will officially open this week, on a special roadway outside Amsterdam. Power generated by the SolaRoad's panels will be funneled into the national energy grid.

The project in the town of Krommenie is being called the world's first public road that includes embedded solar cells. The crystalline silicon solar cells are encased in two layers of tempered safety glass, mounted in a concrete housing.

The equipment is part of pre-built concrete slabs that SolaRoad says have been refined in years of testing. The company says it's been a challenge to produce energy-producing slabs that are both durable and rideable by thousands of cyclists a day.

"It has to be translucent for sunlight and repel dirt as much as possible," the company says. "At the same time, the top layer must be skid resistant and strong enough in order to realize a safe road surface."

The section of the path that's opening this week is some 230 feet long. Its creators call it a test of an idea that could someday lead to roads that generate the same power that electric cars use to travel on them.

.....

The researchers say the portion of the path that's opening Wednesday could meet the electrical demands of two or three houses for a year.

Because they lie flat instead of being angled to take optimal advantage of the sun, the path's panels will produce about 30 percent less power than similar panels might produce on a rooftop. But the researchers also note that with around 87,000 miles of roadways, Holland's total road surface area is "significantly larger" than that of rooftops that could host solar panels.

SolaRoad is a collaboration led by the research group TNO and the government of the province of North Holland. You can read more about its technical aspects at the Phys Org site, which reports that most of the $3.7 million cost was paid by the local authority.

<more>

Solar Bike Path Opens This Week In The Netherlands : The Two-Way : NPR
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Old 11-26-2014, 01:37 PM
 
Location: Nort Seid
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A different angle, and cool nevertheless:

This solar-powered, glow-in-the-dark, Van Gogh-inspired bike path will blow your*mind | Grist
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Old 11-26-2014, 03:36 PM
 
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They'll put in solar bike paths but can't seem to put solar on every roof top that can accommodate it. Yup, lets figure out the least efficient way of doing things that cost the most money and go with that.
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Old 11-26-2014, 08:56 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mack Knife View Post
They'll put in solar bike paths but can't seem to put solar on every roof top that can accommodate it. Yup, lets figure out the least efficient way of doing things that cost the most money and go with that.
Well,it is the french were talking about.
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Old 11-26-2014, 11:52 PM
 
4,718 posts, read 8,943,246 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mack Knife View Post
They'll put in solar bike paths but can't seem to put solar on every roof top that can accommodate it. Yup, lets figure out the least efficient way of doing things that cost the most money and go with that.
And this is odd how? Seems quite normal to me that the more expensive approach would be taken first. This is government, right?

Also a good test for the future of solar roadways and parking lots. Would like to see a solar walkway/bike path that has the heating element in it to see if it can melt snow and still generate extra power.

Also, at one point shouldn't it be cheaper to NOT have to climb on a rooftop to put down panels?
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Old 11-29-2014, 10:17 AM
 
Location: Volcano
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Originally Posted by Cyberguy1950 View Post
Well,it is the french were talking about.
Actually, no... Both articles cited were about the Dutch. Bicycles are a big part of Dutch culture. It seems like everybody in The Netherlands rides a bike at least part of the time. Looked at in that context, these experiments with solar powered lighted bike paths make a lot more sense.
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Old 11-29-2014, 09:51 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dakster View Post
Would like to see a solar walkway/bike path that has the heating element in it to see if it can melt snow and still generate extra power.
It can't. You don't need a "test", you just need physics. It takes a massive, massive amount of electricity to melt. There are installed systems that exist, they work and are worthwhile for some niche applications. (Ex: Ski areas will heat a gondola lift line). They just require an obscene amount of electricity and will never be practical for widespread use.

Anyway, a solar bike path is fine, it doesn't have any of the issues that a solar roadway has. Weight limits, repeated punishment/abuse of the surface, etc.

Quote:
Also, at one point shouldn't it be cheaper to NOT have to climb on a rooftop to put down panels?
Not really, as solar rooftop installations are done with the panels facing into the sun, making them much more efficient than laying a panel flat on the ground.
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Old 11-30-2014, 08:35 PM
 
208 posts, read 279,456 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OpenD View Post
Actually, no... Both articles cited were about the Dutch. Bicycles are a big part of Dutch culture. It seems like everybody in The Netherlands rides a bike at least part of the time. Looked at in that context, these experiments with solar powered lighted bike paths make a lot more sense.
Population 16,805,037 They need to be on bikes.
Netherlands slightly less than twice the size of New Jersey
http://www.insidervlv.com/landmass.html
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Old 12-01-2014, 09:15 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cyberguy1950 View Post
Population 16,805,037 They need to be on bikes.
Netherlands slightly less than twice the size of New Jersey
http://www.insidervlv.com/landmass.html
Darn right. The idea that small countries are models for larger ones with many times the population of the smaller ones is a joke.

16 million people, LOL, just about the number of illegal immigrants in this country. Comparing those small population countries to the USA with it much larger land mass, greater travel distances and so on is ridiculous.

Notice how the comparisons to other EU countries or other countries on the same continent are rarely if ever used?

Why isn't everyone lined up to immigrate to the Netherlands? (Excluding dopers)
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Old 12-01-2014, 02:18 PM
 
Location: Volcano
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mack Knife View Post
Darn right. The idea that small countries are models for larger ones with many times the population of the smaller ones is a joke.
But you have posted negative stories from foreign countries many times to try to prove your points. Do I really need to quote your previous posts on this, like the one trying to prove that Scotland's experience with wind power... within an entirely different geographical, political, and financial environment... proves your point about the future of wind power in the US? And there are several more...

Quote:
16 million people, LOL, just about the number of illegal immigrants in this country. Comparing those small population countries to the USA with it much larger land mass, greater travel distances and so on is ridiculous. Notice how the comparisons to other EU countries or other countries on the same continent are rarely if ever used? Why isn't everyone lined up to immigrate to the Netherlands? (Excluding dopers)
Because it is a different culture, obviously. It appeals to some, doesn't to another. But they do have special expertise in certain areas, like the use of wind energy. Clearly they can teach us something about the engineering, if not about politics or economics.
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