Half-mile stretch could provide enough energy to power entire village’s street lights
A solar panel road, claimed to be the world’s first, has opened in France, reports the Daily Mail Online.
The 0.6 miles (1km) stretch of road in the small Normandy village of Tourouvre-au-Perche is paved with 2,880 solar panels, which convert energy from the sun into electricity. It is hoped that the the road could eventually provide enough energy to power the small village’s street lights.
The ‘Wattway’ road features 2,800 sq m (9,186 sq ft) of panels and was showcased today at an inauguration ceremony attended by French minister for Ecology, Sustainable Development and Energy Ségolène Royal.
The road is expected to produce 280 MWh of electricity a year.
While the daily production will fluctuate according to weather and seasons, it is expected to reach 767 kWh per day, with peaks up to 1,500 kWh per day in summer.
Some 2,000 motorists will use the RD5 road every day during a two-year test period.
During that time, assessments will be made as to whether the road is capable of generating enough power to run the village’s street lights. Tourouvre-au-Perchef is home to around 3,400 residents.
The project is said to have cost €5m (£4.2m/$5.1) and was financed by the French government.
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