Phase IIB Research


Artist’s conception of an SR3 panel

Actual SR3 prototypes

November, 2015 – Solar Roadways Incorporated is awarded a Phase IIB SBIR (Small Business Innovative Research) contract by the U.S. Department of Transportation. The 2-year $750,000 Phase IIB contract includes additional civil engineering tests including:

Freeze/Thaw Cycling: Panels will be placed in an environmental chamber and exposed to extreme temperatures to make sure the mechanical/electrical systems hold up.

Moisture Conditioning: Additional environmental chamber testing. This time, the panels will be frozen into a block of ice and then thawed – many times.

Shear Testing: Panels will be subjected to high shear forces to simulate heavy vehicles braking.

Advanced Loading: Will simulate years of truck abuse in a matter of months.

While we plan to begin with non-critical applications such as driveways, parking lots, sidewalks, bike paths, etc., these civil engineering tests will get us closer to being ready for public roads and highways – our ultimate goal.

SR3 prototypes

As can be seen in the picture above, higher intensity LEDs have replaced those of the SR2 panels. They’re easily seen in the daylight now. The mounting holes have also been removed to allow for more surface coverage with the solar cells. SR2 was a 36-watt panel and the SR3 is a 48-watt panel of the same size. The edge connectors should make installation easier. More to come on that subject after the first SR3 installation.

Thanks to the many people from all over the world who donated to our first and ongoing Indiegogo campaigns, we’ve been able to purchase some equipment for both prototyping and manufacturing. Among some of the larger acquisitions:


CNC machine for glass

Kiln

CO2 laser

Newly arrived reflow oven

Scott’s favorite

Glass working table

Raw glass cart

Finished glass cart

The more equipment we have, the more of the manufacturing we can handle internally, which brings costs down and speeds up processing.