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Science and Technology "Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known." - Carl Sagan.

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Old June 3 2014, 04:12 PM   #16
farmkid
Commodore
 
Re: Solar Roads

I don't know how much, but certainly much less than what it would cost to convert them to solar roads. My relative's figures were $70/sq. ft. for solar roads (from the inventor) vs. $10/sq. ft. for conventional construction. It sounds like a good idea, and I'm all for trying it out in a few places to see how it works, but the cost is a serious hurdle for its widespread use. $56 trillion is about 4 times the GDP of the US.
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Old June 3 2014, 04:24 PM   #17
MacLeod
Admiral
 
Location: Great Britain
Re: Solar Roads

Of course the entrire road surface might not have to be replaced just run a strip of these devices along the side of the road.
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Old June 3 2014, 04:50 PM   #18
gturner
Admiral
 
Location: Kentucky
Re: Solar Roads

Since the mid-1960's, total federal highway spending in constant 2009 dollars has averaged about $40 billion a year. That includes both construction and maintenance. So you'd want to save up a thousand years of highway revenue to install it.

Something that would be much cheaper and simpler for melting snow and ice would be digging deep trenches and filling them with spiral plastic pipe, then filling the trenches back in. Then you can use geothermal heat to pump warm fluid up into lines built into the road surface, especially through bridges and overpasses that have installation installed on the undersides to cut their heat loss in half. Whenever it gets cold and a snow front moves in, you just turn on the pumps to bring the roadway above freezing.
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