The A63 Motorway project is dedicated to promoting awareness of environmental issues. The project’s management team completed the installation in October 2017 of a trial road surface technology that generates electricity from solar energy, known as ‘Wattway’. This follows the successful communication campaign launched in April 2017 to reduce the incidence of forest fires caused by users of the road discarding their used cigarette butts along the side of the road.
The solar road surface trial is one of several local initiatives promoting the use of renewable electricity. It has therefore received a lot of support from key political stakeholders and positive media coverage.
This is the first time that this technology has been used on a motorway and the design life of the panels is 10 years. The peak power output of the installed panels is 7kW. The energy generated will be sufficient to supply most of the northern toll plaza’s needs; thereby reducing the potential impact should there be an interruption in the external electricity supply.
Plans are being developed by the technology’s developer to roll out the trial of the technology across more than 30 sites, with more than half outside of France.