With aid and interest from the federal government and General Electric, Scott Brusaw, an engineer from Idaho, has been refining his concept of the road of the future.
As the sun energizes the solar cells, energy can be transferred to power street signs, nearby homes and roadside businesses. In snowy climates, the collected energy could heat the roadway and melt snow and ice, eliminating the need for large fleets of plows.
Brusaw insists that glass developers can create a strong enough material that traction and durability would not be an issue. A few problems do stand in the way of course, as is typically the case with new ideas and technology. Most notable of these problems is the issue of cost. Brusaw estimates that it would costs about $4.4 million per mile to lay down this super-glass roadway. Of course, the road would eventually recoup that money and even generate a greater return, but the initial cost is a daunting one.