Innovation is key to sustainable living and South Korea has created a unique solar power system using a bike lane which is built into an existing highway.
In densely populated parts of the world, its often challenging to find the space needed to install solar panels.
As such, design is more than just about aesthetics; it also needs to be practical.
This bike lane in South Korea does just that. Positioned between Daejeon and Sejong, it extends for 20 miles.
And it also makes use of what is usually ‘dead’ space between freeways. Also, the track requires no agricultural or natural land and the landscape is not further spoiled.
Cyclists can access the solar road via underground tunnels. The bike lane is walled in on both sides to offer protection from the road, with the solar panels placed above on the roof.
The electricity which is generated by the cycle track is used to power the freeway lights and also for charging stations for electric vehicles.
Solar tracks are becoming more commonplace
Solar roads for bicycles were first introduced in the Netherlands in 2014.
Similar solar road projects have been springing up across Europe, including a stunning one Poland. Based in the Mazury region, the bike track lights up at night in a luminous blue colour.
— Paweł Jagiełło (@JagielloPawel) October 3, 2016
The majority of bicycle solar paths have the panels situated on the ground, with the design of the Daejeon to Sejong road being unique in terms of its overhead panels. The roof created by the panels brings the additional benefit of protecting cyclists from the scorching sun and from rain.
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On the flip side, with six lanes of traffic surrounding the track, there will be concerns over the air quality.
Image Credit: Screenshot Janbaz Salehi