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Minister Kamp opens SolaRoad solar cycle lane in Krommenie in the Netherlands

14 November 2014

The Netherlands’ minister of Economic Affairs Henk Kamp and Elisabeth Post of the North Holland Provincial Executive biked into the future on November 12, officially opening SolaRoad with an inaugural ride along the solar cycle lane on modern e-bikes.

SolaRoad officiële opening 

SolaRoad is being developed by the Netherlands’ TNO research institute, North Holland Province, Ooms Civiel and Imtech Traffic&Infra.

“SolaRoad will put the Netherlands on the map as a leader in sustainable innovation.”

minister of Economic Affairs Henk Kamp

 

“Today marks a milestone in SolaRoad’s development. I am proud of our participation in the consortium and I’m looking forward to the future, which will see SolaRoad developing from a pilot into a fully-fledged product.”

Elisabeth Post of the North Holland Provincial Executive

Test phase

The 100-metre test route is made up of a series of concrete modules measuring 2.5 by 3.5 metres. Along one of its two lanes, solar cells have been embedded in the modules and covered with a layer of tempered glass of about a centimetre thick. The other cycle lane, which hasn’t been fitted with solar cells, will be used to test the relative merits of various types of surfacing. Over the coming weeks tests will be carried out to see how much energy the cycle path can generate.

This SolaRoad test route is situated in Krommenie, running alongside the N203 motorway from the Texaco filling station on the railway side (see Google Maps).

Preliminary results

Solar energy generated by the road can be used to power anything from street lighting to traffic lights, electric cars using the road and even households. Over the coming three years various measurements and tests will be carried out to develop SolaRoad further. The first test results since the cycle path was first taken into use on 24 October are according to expectations: some 140 kWh of electricity was generated by this first stretch of SolaRoad. 

Road of the future

A group of thirty children allowed to test the new cycle path agreed it offered a ‘smooth ride’ but above all that it was ‘cool to be able to bike along the world’s first-ever SolaRoad.’ The children feature in the new SolaRoad video launched today, which shows them cycling along this road of the future: