Out of Maya's meeting with Shanto, a book - and so much more - is being born. Welcome!

Building Roadways out of Solarpanels – a Vision Worthy a Civilized Planet!

Jun 2, 14 • Project-Related2 CommentsRead More »

The above video clip features┬áthe Solar Roadways vision/project. And, what follows below is Shanto’s birthday letter to himself, inspired by this vision/project – one of the coolest and most uplifting he’s ever heard of. :-)

Beloved Shanto, child of the earth,

The, by the people beloved, Russian singer-songwriter Vladimir Vysotsky sings in one of his songs that “we Russians” have “clad the domes with gold” so that “God will look at us often”.

Vysotsky died only 42 years old as a consequence of alcoholism, smoking and drug abuse.

I turn 47 today, and come to think of Vysotsky’s song as I watch the above video clip about the amazing vision – and already initiated project – of replacing the asphalt of our roadways with solarpanels.

“With solar panels are we earthlings cladding our roadways – so that God will look at us often”… Not a bad soundtrack to accompany the road into the future, or what do you think? ­čśë

Personally, I feel this is one of the greatest visions I’ve ever heard of!

 

There is a number of reasons why I feel it’s a really great vision – including the following 7:

* Our globalised world is in need of globally applicable visions – just like this one.

* It doesn’t involve the construction of new infrastructure, only the gradual transformation of the existing global network of roadways that is already in use by billions of people daily.

* All aspects taken together, it seems to me a more holistically fulfilling answer to the enigma of how to supply the planet with renewable energy for human utilization than any other I’ve ever heard of.

* It seems to be practically doable! A protoype is already in place, and the implementation of the vision is already underway…

* It makes use of the very Source of life on earth – The Sun – in a “globally intelligent” way; a way that makes me think that something worthy of being called a global civilization is actually about to establish itself on our planet… :-)

* The vision is well anchored in the life story of a pretty humble man, as it seems. According to what he tells us, the first seed of the idea of using solarpanels in this way was actually planted in his engineer’s brain by a person he’s known since preschool: his own wife.

* The vision makes my heart sing, and it keeps singing as I look a bit deeper into the nuts and bolts of the first steps of implementation…

 

In my universe, the concept of “God” points to The Light. The Light that is inherent to the – inner&outer – Sun (and all the other stars alike); the Light that shines on the sinner as much as the saint; the Light that is reflected by the gold of the Russian bulbous domes, extolled by Vladimir Vysotsky…

So, as I – in my universe – imagine a planet with roadways clad with solarpanels, I know beyond doubt that “God” will look at us often. :-)

Rationally speaking, it will of course not be more often than now (including our asphalt roadways), but it will surely be with so much more divine Delight

Just as we will be looking back, at “God” with so much more divine delight in our Hearts, sweetly knowing that we – as a planet of human beings – are making everyday use of an infrastructure that is finally in tune with our Mother Nature as well as our Father Sun

 

I’m grateful to Maya who first showed me the video clip, and the Child Of The Earth Initiative (through Maya and me) hereby wishes to express its heartfelt support for the Solar Roadways Initiative. :-)

Do you too – reader of Shanto’s birthday letter to himself – feel inspired? Do you want to support the Solar Roadways economically? Then visit their crowdfunding campaign. And for more info, their official website is here.

 

Happy birthday, happy earth day!!!

 

/Shanto

 

2 Responses to Building Roadways out of Solarpanels – a Vision Worthy a Civilized Planet!

  1. Luke says:

    The idea seems pretty amazing at first, just imagine how much power we could create from these panels. But ill forgive you for getting so enticed by the fast talking hip sounding narrator to get you excited about a product. When you actually take a step back and consider the feasibility of it you run into many issues which quickly render the entire idea solar freaking roadways useless.

    This video by a popular youtuber called ‘Thunderf00t’ does a good job of explaining some of the reasons why http://youtu.be/H901KdXgHs4

    Incase you do not wish to watch the video here is a summary of his main points.

    1) Just the cost of the glass paving itself would make this an extremely expensive endeavor.

    2) Glass tends to very slippy when dirty or wet which roads often are, no tests have been shown for these conditions or an emergency stop in dry weather.

    3) Dirt would act like sandpaper on the glass making it smoother and more opaque, simultaneously reducing its suitability as a road surface and lowering energy output (less energy reaches the cell).

    4) Even super bright LEDs are difficult to see at a shallow angle during strong sunlight, this means that most roads would still have to have painted on markings anyway. It is instead much more efficient just to equip cars with headlights and place cat’s eyes in the roads, some urban roads may need a dynamic road system but these are by far the exception.

    5) Energy transport losses will mean that for any road surface that isn’t near a point of use (e.g. a house), this will technology will be essentially useless.

    6) These solar cells are not going to generate enough power to melt snow, it is much more energy efficient just to push snow off the road and grit the road.

    7) The claim of the use of recycled glass is ridiculous.

    8) Roads are not made out of separate tiles as a)water will filter through the cracks and erode the material beneath the road and b) vehicles rolling over the tiles will cause differential loading leading the tiles to wiggle loose.

    Simply put It would be much easier and more cost effective to just install solar panels above parking space and/or by the side of the road rather than underneath it.

  2. admin says:

    Dear Luke, thanks for sharing your thoughts. Let’s hope, for the sake of a sustainable future on the planet, that the potential challenges you’re listing can be met and overcome. At Child Of The Earth, we don’t doubt that there must be many tough challenges during the implementation phase of a grand vision such as that of Solar Roadways. The reasons we’re enthusiastic about it, however, have been listed in our blog post – and our enthusiasm is not diminished by people pointing to the potential practical obstacles. Rome wasn’t built in a day…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *