Solar Roadways Is An Environmental Concept So Big, That You Should Probably Only Read This If You Are The Kind Of Person Who Can Dare To Dream

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There’s a new buzz-phrase out there that’s caught the public imagination, that’s striking a chord with anyone with an environmental conscience who can dare to dream big: Solar Roadways.

Solar Roadways is a company with a single purpose: To replace the US’ deteriorating highway infrastructure and crumbling power grid with an intelligent highway system that pays for itself through the generation of electricity and doubles as an intelligent, self-healing, decentralized power grid.

Told you this was a big idea.

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Solar Roadways is a modular paving system of solar panels that can withstand the heaviest of trucks. These Solar Road Panels can be installed on roads, parking lots, driveways, sidewalks, bike paths, playgrounds... literally any surface under the sun.

They pay for themselves primarily through the generation of electricity, which can power homes and businesses connected via driveways and parking lots. The figures show that if Solar Roadways were utilized throughout the US, the system could produce more clean renewable energy than a country uses as a whole.

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Solar Roadways have many other features as well, including: Heating elements to stay snow and ice free, LEDs to give drivers warning signs, and an attached Cable Corridor to store and treat stormwater.

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Electric vehicles would be able to charge with energy from the sun – instead of fossil fuels – from parking lots and driveways, and mutual induction technology would even allow for charging while driving. 

Yep, we told you that this was a big idea. Here’s a cool video to help you get your head around it...

And, as the video points out, all those LEDs are going to make it "look like freakin' TRON out there... but real". Quite frankly, if that doesn't convince you, nothing will.

The concept is certainly striking a chord, and the Idaho couple behind the idea have managed to attract a record number of backers on the crowd-sourcing website Indiegogo. In fact, they smashed their target of US$1 million six days before deadline. At the time of press they had raises 164 per cent of their overall target: That’s a whopping US$1,635,959.

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It seems that a lot of people out there like this idea...

This wave of positive support could almost herald of a new earth-friendly movement. A statement from the couple reads: “It seems like the world is gathering round our concept as a vote for a paradigm shift, where innovation and creativity are honoured rather than suppressed. Our wish is that the conversation happening around our campaign may reinvigorate the innovative spirit of America and other great nations. Perhaps this will lead to a new scientific renaissance, and this time one that spans the entire globe.”

Here’s hoping...