France has opened world’s first solar highway, in a Normandy village, a project by French civil engineering Colas. The road, named as “Watt Way”, was inaugurated by ecology minister Ségolène Royal, who said that she wanted to build 1000 km of solar highways in France. The purpose of paved road with solar panels is to provide enough power to the street lights of the Normandy town The highway is one kilometer (0.6 mi) long that is covered with 2,800 square meters of resin.
Ségolène Royal said that this use of solar energy will be very helpful as it helps to produce electricity free of cost. The minister announced a four-year “plan for the national deployment of solar highways”
For the testing of this solar highway, an average of 2,000 cars is using each day. According to Colas, the panels have been covered with a resin containing fine sheets of silicon that make them tough enough to withstand all traffic.
The main problem with constructing solar roads is their cost. According to Colas, each panel is just a few millimeters thick that are installed on top of the paved road, which in turn reduces construction costs. The cost of 1km road in Normandy cost €5 million (£4.3m) to build and thus €10 million for the two-sided highway. The total cost to cover the portion of the country road is estimated in billions or even trillions. It’s ridiculously very expensive.
In 2014, Netherland built a solar highway for bikes that were 70-meter(230-foot) long.Japan is also working to construct innovative solar plants.
In spite of all these things, some questions are also arising that how it will stand up to climate changings, and how long it will last.