This would be awesome if it came to fruit, esp if the glass roads were made well enough that there was little need to repair them all the time like has to be done with paved roads. If nothing else, if this eliminated pot holes I would be exstatic!
Yeah, pretty crazy price. But the parking lots are a great place to start. good, low-speed test-bed to see how the surface responds to weight, heat, cold, precipitation, etc. If the material can last long enough without needing repair, which it should, this could easily be more cost-efficient than asphalt. I love the idea of the parking lots powering EV charging stations. Good forward-thinking revenue producer.4 mil per mile...
Same here, that and the related issue of transparency for the solar panels coupled with a friction surface and the inevitable road-grime from vehicle use.03GTV6 said:Wow, neat concept. The only thing I'm concerned about is making this super strong glass mimic the grip of asphalt.
Gorilla glass. While its not meant for roads, the stuff is tough as hell and cheap. Give it a few years and I'm sure they could refine it even more to be usable for roadways.great in theory, will never happen practically. In order for the solar rays to reach teh cells, the glass needs to be clean. Clean glass gives outstanding traction (if your tires are clean), I would wager better than asphalt. But dusty or wet glass is more slick than ice. If you find a way to prevent dust from falling on it..... lol I am pretty sure most solor cells move to optimize angles ect. and have a verticle vector to them so dust doens't accumulate as easily? When you do a burn out or skid and smear the glass then you rendor that useless untill somone cleans the smears off.
Then you have scratching, of all the rocks and pebbles caught in tires.....
They say it can melt snow, so now you have water on glass which is just as slippery. I guess you could maybe have it hot enough to evaporae the water, but then you will wear tires more, though I guess you could have higher inflated tires, but this would only be a factor on this one solar road screwing you everywhere else. And again, the dust is still a factor.
Or if you 'roughed' up the glass, they you would have traction, but it is no longer very transparent.
I don't think hard glass is the solution, it is eliminating the environmental issues or what happens on the glass.
How hot do you think glass will get on a 120* day with black backing behind it? It will probably melt your tires.
Though the parking lot idea isn't too bad..... You are driving slower so safetey isn't as much of an issue, but parking lots are usualy covered with cars.... unless it is night time, when the sun isn't out.
This would proabbly become the new 'place' for birds to crap. It is so shiny and clean, we would have to kill all the birds.
Quit wasting our time to reseach a flawed and highly ineficeint power source and go nuclear.
I like it. I honestly don't know why we don't do that now. Worst case, 100,000,000 years from now some alien sends it backThat is pretty cool glass, but again, that is just one 'easily' overcome obastacle. Controlling the environment is much harder and that is where traction issues and transparancy issues come into play. And just because it is flexible, doens't mean it can't scratch.
And as far as spent nuclear fuel, space is huge, just chuck it out there. Try to to hit other planets, but if ou did it isn't a huge deal, they get hit by stuff 1000 times as big all the time.lol
Expensive? Hardly. The manneed survival and navigation is what makes our rockets to the moon expensive, UAV's are the future and about 10-20 times cheaper. A "disposable rocket' I can't see costing more than 5-10mil. An ICBM only cost about 50 mil (I would bet the nuclear payload accounts for a lot of that), and a space shuttle is in the billions, so that is 100 times cheaper for an 'unmanned' varient. You would probably need as many plants as you do house representatives.Really we should just reprocess it. I think the process was originally banned in the US because of fear that it would fall into the wrong hands and be weaponized, but several other countries in the world do it.
We can't send it into space because it's waaaay too expensive. Besides, we have plenty of perfectly good volcanoes to dump it in.