Off-Grid Street Lighting via ENGINEERING.com
It costs a lot of money to build a road ... even more if you want to add wires to power the streetlights from the grid. Urban Green Energy (UGE) has a solution: an off-the-grid streetlight.
UGE recently installed 120 streetlights on a stretch of highway in PingQuan, China. What’s special about these lights? They’re powered by a combination of solar and wind. Complementary systems derive the most energy because when the solar resource is low (e.g. in the winter), it’s often windy. On the other hand, it’s more likely to be sunny on calm summer days. When your photovoltaic panels are in the dark, the wind turbines pick up the slack. And when the wind slows down, it’s likely that the solar panels will produce. (That’s the theory, at least.) What about calm nights? The light fixture includes a battery that holds enough energy for up to five days of autonomy.