World’s First Solar Panel Road Unveiled In France


France seems to be taking solar panelling from the roofs to the streets. The one kilometer road is located in the small Normandy village of Tourouvre-au-Perche.

The road has been paved with 2880 solar panels which convert energy from the sun into electricity. Protective resin consisting of fine sheets of silicon covers the panels and helps withstand the motorists who use the road.

The road, called ‘Wattway,’ was inaugurated by ecology minister Segolene Royal. The road is expected to produce 280 MWh of electricity a year and officials hope it will provide enough energy to power the small village’s street lights.

If the trial proves successful, Royal wants to see the panels installed in one out of every 1,000 kilometres of road in the country. As the costs of solar panels are coming down, a number of countries are coming up with innovative ways to tap solar power.

The project cost around €5 million and was financed entirely by the French government. Check out the road in the video below.