Missouri to consider solar roadways

2 years 10 months 11 hours ago Friday, June 24 2016 Jun 24, 2016 Friday, June 24, 2016 6:48:00 PM CDT June 24, 2016 in News
By: Lishan Guo, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - Some drivers in Missouri could soon be rolling down the road of the future.

The Missouri Department of Transportation is working on a Solar Roadways Pilot Project for sidewalks and roadways, which means roads would be embedded with solar panels.

MoDOT is working with the Federal Highway Administration and a solar panel company to deploy some of the roadway panels at the Route 66 Welcome Center off I-44 in Conway, Missouri, by the end of the year.

"In this way, it will be a small deployment of solar roadway panels likely on the sidewalk at first. If they can succeed, it can grow off the sidewalk into paved areas where we would drive our cars," Tom Blair, serves in Missouri Department of Transportation and leads the "Road to Tomorrow" team, said.

Solar Roadways is a company in northern Idaho developing solar panels that people can "drive on." Blair said Missouri has not increased the investment in transportation for almost 20 years, and MoDOT needs to be seeking innovation.

"Solar Roadways has envisioned us, all of us as citizens being able to drive on roadways that are all embedded with solar panels. The solar panel that they envision would create solar electricity that's offsetting the cost of the roadway, possibly becoming a roadway that eventually pays for itself," Blair said.

According to Solar Roadways, "Our panels contain LED lights to create lines and signage without paint. They contain heating elements to prevent snow and ice accumulation. The panels have microprocessors, which makes them intelligent. This allows the panels to communicate with each other, a central control station, and vehicles."

Melinda Lee, a driver in Missouri, said the LED lighting would make driving safer, especially at night and in bad weather.

"Back in the 80's, when I was driving back and forth to college, sometimes with the rain and the storms, you can't always see the lanes," Lee said.

Blair told KOMU there are two ways for the funding. One comes from Federal Highway Administration research funding, and the other way is from crowdfunding.

"Missouri is preparing to seek the first ever Department of Transportation crowdfunding effort. So we are going to go out there publicly on the internet and ask for money to make our Solar Roadways Pilot Project even bigger and better," Blair announced in a presentation in Kansas City.

Lee commends MoDOT for trying something different in an attempt to make the roadways better.

"This program is something that helps save a few lives, that's the perfect place for us to place the money," Lee said.

 

 

 

More News

Grid
List
Drew Lock needed to keep moving. The NFL draft was set to start in less than 90 minutes. People wanted to... More >>
1 hour ago Friday, April 26 2019 Apr 26, 2019 Friday, April 26, 2019 1:17:47 AM CDT April 26, 2019 in Sports
KANSAS CITY - Missourians looking to avoid long drives between the state's two biggest cities may have renewed hope after... More >>
3 hours ago Thursday, April 25 2019 Apr 25, 2019 Thursday, April 25, 2019 10:38:00 PM CDT April 25, 2019 in News
HOLTS SUMMIT - The city aldermen voted to hold a special election after a 35-35 tie for the Holts Summit... More >>
4 hours ago Thursday, April 25 2019 Apr 25, 2019 Thursday, April 25, 2019 10:25:00 PM CDT April 25, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Heading into Thursday night's NFL draft, MU's Drew Lock is surrounded by family and friends in Nashville for... More >>
8 hours ago Thursday, April 25 2019 Apr 25, 2019 Thursday, April 25, 2019 6:30:00 PM CDT April 25, 2019 in News
NASHVILLE - Former Missouri quarterback Drew Lock did not hear his name called Thursday night, to the surprise of his... More >>
8 hours ago Thursday, April 25 2019 Apr 25, 2019 Thursday, April 25, 2019 6:10:00 PM CDT April 25, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Target 8 discovered more than 16 sex offenders living at Columbia's Welcome Inn, which an online map shows... More >>
8 hours ago Thursday, April 25 2019 Apr 25, 2019 Thursday, April 25, 2019 6:07:00 PM CDT April 25, 2019 in Target 8
JEFFERSON CITY  - Jefferson City Parks, Recreation and Forestry has now installed phone-charging equipment on two of the five solar... More >>
9 hours ago Thursday, April 25 2019 Apr 25, 2019 Thursday, April 25, 2019 5:30:00 PM CDT April 25, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Several bottles of wine from an Eldon winery have exploded, according to federal officials. The Missouri... More >>
10 hours ago Thursday, April 25 2019 Apr 25, 2019 Thursday, April 25, 2019 4:27:00 PM CDT April 25, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Oakland Middle School held its "Stronger Together," a multicultural festival to promote diversity with students and teachers Thursday.... More >>
10 hours ago Thursday, April 25 2019 Apr 25, 2019 Thursday, April 25, 2019 3:42:00 PM CDT April 25, 2019 in News
MOBERLY - The Moberly Police Department is looking for a white box van after a young girl told her parents... More >>
11 hours ago Thursday, April 25 2019 Apr 25, 2019 Thursday, April 25, 2019 3:31:00 PM CDT April 25, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Missouri legislators are working on a tax incentive in hopes of bringing movie production back to the... More >>
11 hours ago Thursday, April 25 2019 Apr 25, 2019 Thursday, April 25, 2019 2:48:00 PM CDT April 25, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Hundreds of veterans gathered at the Capitol Thursday to be honored 50 years after the Vietnam War.... More >>
14 hours ago Thursday, April 25 2019 Apr 25, 2019 Thursday, April 25, 2019 12:37:00 PM CDT April 25, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA – The first of several bargaining negotiations between MU and its workers to increase minimum wage to $15 is... More >>
23 hours ago Thursday, April 25 2019 Apr 25, 2019 Thursday, April 25, 2019 3:07:00 AM CDT April 25, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Former Mizzou head football coach Gary Pinkel formally announced the launch of his foundation, called “GP M.A.D.E.” Wednesday... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, April 24 2019 Apr 24, 2019 Wednesday, April 24, 2019 9:47:00 PM CDT April 24, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - The city's Airport Advisory Board met Wednesday for the first time since Columbia Regional Airport had to close... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, April 24 2019 Apr 24, 2019 Wednesday, April 24, 2019 8:01:00 PM CDT April 24, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA- A proposed wind project in Harrisburg is now getting the local government involved. The Boone County planning and... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, April 24 2019 Apr 24, 2019 Wednesday, April 24, 2019 7:55:00 PM CDT April 24, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - People gathered in downtown Jefferson City Wednesday evening to walk for Rape and Abuse Crisis Service or... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, April 24 2019 Apr 24, 2019 Wednesday, April 24, 2019 7:48:00 PM CDT April 24, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The Missouri House will hold a public hearing Thursday morning to allow people with disabilities to renew... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, April 24 2019 Apr 24, 2019 Wednesday, April 24, 2019 7:29:00 PM CDT April 24, 2019 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 49°
3am 50°
4am 50°
5am 48°
6am 47°