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Dr. Jane Goodall
World's first road paved with solar panelsWritten by
Dr. Jane Goodall on 4 Dec, 2015 | Modified 28 May, 2016 | Views 652
An energy-harvesting bike path paved with glass-coated solar panels.
Solar panels aren't just for roofs anymore — the world's first road paved with solar panels is working better than expected
The Netherlands made headlines last year when it built the world's first solar road - an energy-harvesting bike path paved with glass-coated solar panels.
Now, six months into the trial, engineers say the system is working even better than expected, with the 70-metre test bike path generating 3,000 kWh, or enough electricity to power a small household for a year.
The Netherlands became the first country to put the idea into practice with their installation in Krommenie, a town north of Amsterdam.
The solar panels used on the Dutch bike path are sandwiched between glass, silicon rubber and concrete, and are strong enough to support 12-tonne fire trucks without any damage. Each individual panel connects to smart meters, which optimise their output and feed their electricity straight into street lighting, or the grid.