Joni Mitchell was wrong when she sang out against paving paradise and putting up a parking lot. Ok, maybe not. Still, we think the demonstration project just built by the folks over at Solar Roadways would get a pass from the Canadian singer-songwriter. That's because the real estate in question is covered with a textured glass surface that can, among many other things, generate low-carbon electricity, melt snow, and throw up safety warnings with its integrated LED lighting system.
What do you need to generate a lot of electricity from photoelectric solar cells? A lot of surface area. What is a lot of the surface of the United States covered in? Roads. Put those two ideas together, and the idea of turning the nation's highways into solar farms doesn't sound too odd, does it? Well, maybe it doesn't until you consider that you're talking about taking electronics – electronics that are typically somewhat delicate and rather expensive – and purposely putting them o
Earlier this week, a 21-year-old driver got on the wrong entrance ramp to the 10 freeway in Los Angeles and ended up going westbound in the eastbound lanes. Doing up to 70 mph in the fast lane, he collided head-on with a police car and he and the officer were killed instantly. Nissan and West Nippon Expressway are working on technology that, using GPS and Telematics, will work to keep such things from happening.