Platio Solar, a Budapest-based company, has come up with an innovative solution for alternative energy – solar pavers made from recycled plastic which can be built into driveways or pavements.
According to the company’s website, a 20-square-meter system is able to generate enough electricity to power an entire household. It can also be used to charge electric cars.
Recycling a big plus
There seem to be several advantages to the product, called the Platio Solar Paver.
Firstly, there’s the recycling aspect. Each solar paver comprises 400 polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles. PET is one of the most common forms of plastic.
Then there’s the strength factor. Once compressed into pavers, the material is more durable than concrete. It’s also reported to be non-slip and needs no maintenance.
Installation of the is ground solar panel is generally easier than solar panels which are attached to rooftops.
Space is another consideration. In some cases, mounting solar panels on a roof may not be possible. There may be obstructions in the way. Or the angle of the roof may not be optimized to catch enough sun.
Of course the opposite may be true too. Some people might just not have enough (or any) driveway or yard space to install the solar paver panels.
At least now though there is choice – the pavers won’t replace their rooftop counterparts, but they provide another option.
It’s also worth nothing that Platio’s energy harvesting systems can also be installed in courtyards and balconies. The balcony option could work for people living in apartments who have access to neither a roof nor an outdoor space.
Wind no longer a problem
Local governments and city planners also now have more scope to implement solar powering systems than they may previously have had.
Wind damage is another issue which Platio Solar’s product neatly avoids. For people living in areas prone to strong winds and storms, the danger of solar panels getting ripped off a roof is real.
Platio Solar have also given their paver panels a sleek design element, which if used appropriately, can actually enhance an outdoor space rather than detract from it. This is especially relevant in modern commercial buildings and urban areas, as you can see in the pictures below. The panels are available in several various colours as well.
Image credits: Platio Solar