Author Topic: EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways  (Read 1268 times)

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Offline EEVblog

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EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways
« on: August 01, 2019, 09:51:54 am »
The inevitable demise of Solar Roadways in France, China, and the Netherlands. But Solar Freak'n Roadways won't go down without a fight!, not that it was ever in the ring, apart from starting this whole boondoggle concept.

 

Online coppercone2

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way above noise floor of typical politicial efficency levels
« Reply #1 on: August 01, 2019, 10:16:45 am »
50% of expected is highly efficient, politicians operate on the PPB efficiently level by default ;D

this is more like a stunning success being downplayed by neurotic engineers. It meets its goals better then most goverment programs.
« Last Edit: August 01, 2019, 10:19:56 am by coppercone2 »
 

Online coppercone2

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Re: EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways
« Reply #2 on: August 01, 2019, 10:20:45 am »
I wonder where they hid the jumper cables to charge it to meet the 50% level though. Undoubtedly there is a rather severely tapped power pole in the region.
 

Online coppercone2

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Re: EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways
« Reply #3 on: August 01, 2019, 10:22:45 am »
Segolines power bill is undoubtedly in the six digit range
 

Offline Deodand2014

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Re: EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways
« Reply #4 on: August 01, 2019, 12:43:46 pm »
You are absolutely right about the complete waste of time and resources this thing has been, sadly with the rise of 'If it feels right, it is right' thinking you can expect a lot more things like this in the future.

And it's not as if this was unknown, if you dig through the US Department of Energy website, you can find all the solar power/home energy efficiency work they did in the 1970s under Carter (A lot of this also used to be duplicated at the NASA Technical Reports Server, but was removed following the 2012 'security scare'.) and the one thing you do not see is 'lay the panels flat on the ground'.

As for the medias role in all this, the same thing happens with 'water from air' devices, no matter how many times the inefficiencies are pointed out, the concept just bobs back up like a rubber duck and each time it's a 'new breakthrough' with the previous failures being ignored.
« Last Edit: August 01, 2019, 06:03:23 pm by Deodand2014 »
 

Offline Brumby

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Re: EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways
« Reply #5 on: August 01, 2019, 11:14:43 pm »
As for the medias role in all this....

$imple and predictable.  If it can attract attention - and, thus, dollars - it's fair game.
 

Offline goeiecool9999

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Re: EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways
« Reply #6 on: August 02, 2019, 01:30:14 am »
Hi there EEVBlog forum. I'd like to link this article relating to the solar bikepath in the Netherlands. Unfortunately it is written in Dutch but google translate seemed to do it's job well on the French articles.
anyways here is is: https://nos.nl/artikel/2010809-zonnefietspad-kan-niet-tegen-de-kou.html
Apparently last winter the surface got so cold that the panels were damaged.
However the company behind these roads did acknowledge it on their twitter and said they took the necessary action to fix it and prevent it from happening again in the future.
Something that I wouldn't see Solar Freaking Roadways doing publicly on their twitter account. Though clearly from the picture posted on twitter in the video that didn't seem to work.
 

Offline Ahaber

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Re: EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways
« Reply #7 on: August 02, 2019, 02:55:48 am »
I live about an hour away from Baltimore. Might stop by and see whats up this weekend. Will report with photos if I make it. |O

Edit: After some digging through instagram posts it would appear the Baltimore installation isn't happening until September will definitely check it out once it's installed.
« Last Edit: August 02, 2019, 06:13:31 am by Ahaber »
 

Offline cFire

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Re: EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways
« Reply #8 on: August 02, 2019, 04:05:29 am »
I found out that I live a 15 minute drive from one of the newer SolaRoad projects in The Netherlands. (The one in Haarlemmermeer.) So I went to see what kind of condition it's in and take a few pictures. Spoiler alert; It's not doing great.

I've attached one of the photos taken from roughly the same vantage point as the photo they show on their site. You can see the solar panels are currently covered by the kind of heavy steel plates they use to make temporary construction work roads.

You can find the high res and the other photos I took here. Just to be clear, the close-up photos are actually of the solar road. There's so much dirt and sand on there it took me a minute to realize it wasn't just normal concrete.
« Last Edit: August 02, 2019, 04:21:25 am by cFire »
 
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Online orion242

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Re: EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways
« Reply #9 on: August 02, 2019, 05:52:44 am »
Wow, that site opened in March this year and that's its current state?  Another epic fail.

https://www.solaroad.nl/portfolio/

 

Offline ExtraSmallWhack

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Re: EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways
« Reply #10 on: August 02, 2019, 06:05:48 am »
You can see the solar panels are currently covered by the kind of heavy steel plates they use to make temporary construction work roads.

That's because it's broken...

The province of Zuid-Holland (Zuid = South) has a few press releases on their website about the SolaRoad (all in Dutch).

March 7th, opening of the bus lane: https://www.zuid-holland.nl/actueel/nieuws/maart-2019/werelds-eerste/
March 15th, a first update: https://www.zuid-holland.nl/actueel/nieuws/maart-2019/update-zonnewegdek/
July 9th, the bus lane pilot is being ended: https://www.zuid-holland.nl/actueel/nieuws/juli-2019/beeindiging-pilot/

So the March 7th one basically had the same information as the press release on the SolaRoad website (as seen in the video).

Then the fun starts, so here are a few translated excerpts from the March 15th one:

Quote
Update pilot solar road surface SolaRoad in the provinces of Noord-Holland and Zuid-Holland

On March 7th 2 separate sections of solar road surface, combined 150 meters, have been put into use in the provinces of Noord- and Zuid-Holland. During a regular inspection on March 13th by a road inspector of the province of Zuid-Holland, two damaged areas were noticed on the SolaRoad road surface of the bus lane in Spijkenisse.

There are 2 areas where water has gotten under the transparent top surface, on one of these areas 2 pieces of about 10x10 cm of the top layer have separated from the surface. Because the precise cause of the damage is unknown and because the damage appeared so quickly after opening of the bus lane, the bus lane was closed as a precaution.
...

The same issue occurred on the parallel road to the N232, 1 area has water under the top surface. Pads were put on top of the SolaRoad, so traffic can use the road as usual. [See the pictures by user cFire]

...

The technology used on the SolaRoad has been in development since 2010 in a public-private collaboration and has been successfully tested for four years on a 90 meter cycle path near Krommenie. By now the solar road surfaces have been developed further, so that they can be used on a carriageway.

Then the full press release from July 9th:

Quote
Bus lane SolaRoad pilot being ended

The pilot project of SolaRoad on the bus lane on the N218 near Spijkenisse was started on March 7th 2019. Shortly after the opening a road inspector noticed a few damaged areas of road surface, so section was closed for further investigation. The results of this investigation reveal that repairing the SolaRoad elements is not possible and that it is not useful for the province of Zuid-Holland to continue with the pilot project.

The investigation revealed that the solar panel and the top layer are separating from the underlying concrete. This detachment of the solar panel causes deformation, which under pressure from heavy traffic causes more damage. Because the damage is in the middle of the SolaRoad elements and not within reach, repairs are not possible.

In the pilot project Zuid-Holland has the role of  launching customer, which means that the province is only investing in construction and monitoring the the SolaRoad test section on the bus lane. Now that it appears that the SolaRoad elements need further development before a new pilot project can be started, the province has decided to end the pilot project of the SolaRoad bus lane and to repair the bus lane soon.

Goal of the pilot projects

The SolaRoad has been successfully tested during the last 4 years on a cycle path nead Krommenie. The application of the solar road surface on a carriageway is the next logical step. The participation of Zuid-Holland in the SolaRoad pilot had as goal to test the SolaRoad technology for technical and commercial viability, when used by heavy traffic, mostly bus traffic. This is a necessary next step for the technical and commercial development of the SolaRoad technology. Both pilots - a test section was also opened in Noord-Holland for heavy traffic - formed a vital link in developing a dependable solution for producting power, at a low cost and high return.

The province regrets the early ending of the pilot. But on the other hand it is inherit to an innovative, promising technology like SolaRoad that problems arise that have not surfaced earlier. The SolaRoad technology provides opportunities for double space usage by deploying existing roads in a network energy supplying roads. The road surface is then not only used as paving for traffic, but also acts as a solar panel to generate energy. The gained knowledge and information from this pilot are definitely useful for the further development of the SolaRoad technology in the long run.

So it looks like Dave doesn't have to worry about his future income from debunking solar road projects..
 

Offline thm_w

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Re: EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways
« Reply #11 on: August 02, 2019, 06:20:01 am »
Resin panels are garbage in terms of reliability (when it comes to water, salt, cold weather, etc.). Are there any commercial solar installations that even use resin panels?
I get why you'd think its better as a road surface, but, glass is much more reliable for solar. So its kind of a lose-lose situation choosing either one.

Hi there EEVBlog forum. I'd like to link this article relating to the solar bikepath in the Netherlands. Unfortunately it is written in Dutch but google translate seemed to do it's job well on the French articles.
anyways here is is: https://nos.nl/artikel/2010809-zonnefietspad-kan-niet-tegen-de-kou.html
Apparently last winter the surface got so cold that the panels were damaged.
However the company behind these roads did acknowledge it on their twitter and said they took the necessary action to fix it and prevent it from happening again in the future.
Something that I wouldn't see Solar Freaking Roadways doing publicly on their twitter account. Though clearly from the picture posted on twitter in the video that didn't seem to work.

I see what you are saying, but cold weather is a thing that damages roads and unless some tech has drastically improved, will keep happening. Regular maintenance has to be considered on these things.
 

Offline EEVblog

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Re: EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways
« Reply #12 on: August 03, 2019, 05:27:04 pm »
You can find the high res and the other photos I took here. Just to be clear, the close-up photos are actually of the solar road. There's so much dirt and sand on there it took me a minute to realize it wasn't just normal concrete.

 :wtf:
THAT'S the panel?
« Last Edit: August 03, 2019, 05:30:42 pm by EEVblog »
 

Online coppercone2

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Re: EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways
« Reply #13 on: August 03, 2019, 07:21:21 pm »
the prison industrial complex can sweep that for a fee
 

Offline Whales

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Re: EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways
« Reply #14 on: August 03, 2019, 09:33:53 pm »
cFire, those photos are beautiful :)
 

Offline Alex26641

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Re: EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways
« Reply #15 on: August 04, 2019, 06:13:25 am »
I read the most recent #1234, and this one... I had to laugh out loud... I especially liked the Carl Sagan Quotes. 
 

Offline Jef06

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Re: EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways
« Reply #16 on: August 04, 2019, 07:47:09 am »
@EEVblog hold onto your hat... The French "département de l'Orne" (the local administration dealing with roads in the area) has allocated 100k euros to rebuild a new version of the road, 400m long this time, with second generation panels...
Link (in French): https://www.ouest-france.fr/normandie/alencon-61000/route-solaire-l-orne-investit-100-000-eu-dans-la-deuxieme-version-du-projet-de-tourouvre-6424676
 

Offline james_s

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Re: EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways
« Reply #17 on: August 04, 2019, 08:16:22 am »
Perhaps if they are going to keep on trying this they should focus on testing a transparent surface that holds up and stays transparent for a reasonable period of time because that is going to be the key to the whole thing working at all.
 

Online Mr. Scram

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Re: EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways
« Reply #18 on: August 04, 2019, 08:20:20 am »
the prison industrial complex can sweep that for a fee
Most of the world doesn't have a "prison for profit" industry.
 

Online coppercone2

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Re: EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways
« Reply #19 on: August 04, 2019, 12:45:13 pm »
can you just drive a street sweeper on this thing once in a while?

i wanna see that woman driving a sweeper
« Last Edit: August 04, 2019, 01:15:16 pm by coppercone2 »
 

Offline Damon

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Re: EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways
« Reply #20 on: August 06, 2019, 04:10:35 am »
Seriously, not a single word on our top-notch German engineering?

Germany got a solar bikeway last winter (November 18):
https://www.spiegel.de/wirtschaft/unternehmen/erftstadt-bei-koeln-deutschlands-erster-solar-radweg-oeffnet-a-1237681.html

SPOILER: The magic smoke escaped  :-DD
https://www.maz-online.de/Brandenburg/Solmove-Solar-Radweg-in-Erftstadt-nach-Schwelbrand-ausser-Betrieb

By the way, Mr. Müller-Judex has found the solution to vehicles causing damage to solar roads:
Don't drive on them, just park your vehicle on the solar panels. (2nd last paragraph of the first link)

GENIUS!!! If the vehicles don't move, there is no friction or stress to cause damage.
Now we all just need cars made from transparent aluminium and the Sun will shine right through them,
onto the space designated to be covered by parking vehicles...  :palm:
 
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Offline TassiloH

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Re: EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways
« Reply #21 on: August 06, 2019, 09:14:16 pm »
Yep, the magic smoke escaped in April or so. In July it was still closed and covered in black tarp (I guess as kind of an EPO switch  :-DD) The latest news article I could find (July 4) says the city is waiting for the company to fix it, but the planned fix must be extensively tested and will then be approved by TÜV before the repair work will start. The city is planning to put up detour signage for the bicyclists...
https://www.rheinische-anzeigenblaetter.de/mein-blatt/werbepost/erftstadt/solarradweg-bleibt-gesperrt-neues-kapitel-in-der-posse-32803092

I should really go there and have a look, it is only a few miles away.
 

Offline Damon

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Re: EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways
« Reply #22 on: August 07, 2019, 09:36:46 pm »
@TassiloH

If you go there, watch out for the energy counter and if it displays anything at all:
https://www1.wdr.de/nachrichten/rheinland/koeln-rhein-erft-solar-radweg-100.html

TL;DR
The city (apparently in charge to to this) forgot to do the paperwork to connect the bikeway to the grid.
Also some panels "were destroyed by vandals using stones, others were not installed correctly"

So this cycle path caught on fire shortly after it was connected to the grid... Coincidence?
Well, no time to think about that, the guy already has plans to pave LA in solar panels:
https://innovationorigins.com/start-up-of-the-day-solmove-cruising-the-streets-with-the-sun/

Oh, and he wants to wirelessly charge cars, make pedestrian crossings appear when children step onto the road, acquire and process data to control traffic and transmit power between homes with his solar road. BINGO!
 

Offline f4eru

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Re: EEVblog #1233 - The Demise Of Solar Roadways
« Reply #23 on: August 09, 2019, 07:03:43 am »
Guys, you don't understand the reasoning here.
Those experiments are for solar cells manufacturers to do efficient accelerated life testing of their products funded by taxpayers.
 :-DD
Hmm. I funded the french one. |O
« Last Edit: August 09, 2019, 07:17:02 am by f4eru »
 


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