Kinetic energy off Bucks roads to power lighting as part of trial

Department for Transport library image
Department for Transport library image

The Government has provided a £4.49 million grant for a trial scheme for Buckinghamshire's roads.

It is part of a project called 'Live Labs' for which Transport Secretary Chris Grayling today (Thursday) announced a total of £22.9million for research and trials on new surface materials and pothole repairs across eight local authorities.

In Bucks the planned scheme is to use kinetic energy off roads to power lighting.

The Department for Transport issued a statement about the Buckinghamshire project saying: "The council would work with Transport Systems Catapult and an innovative partner to manufacture recycled plastic/composite columns to mount lighting sensors, 5G antenna and large format schemes in public areas.

"They will also use sensors to collect data across their highway network including the use of a central management data system to collect data on air quality, road surface temperature, ANPR and CCTV.

"They will also include the application of gully sensors at various locations to help improve efficiency in highways maintenance service.

"In addition they will use new kinetic energy recovery from the carriageway to harvest energy in roadside battery units.

"The Live Lab will also introduce new solar energy generation including solar roads and footways.

"The bid includes a new turbine to help harvest energy to power street furniture using the wind.

"It will also include on-street charging points, a new e-bike hire scheme and a trial at Aylesbury of autonomous pods."

The trial will involve contractors Ringway Jacobs, Transport Systems Catapult, a research institute based in Milton Keynes, Aylesbury Garden Town, Aylesbury Vale District Council, Coldharbour Parish Council, Bucks and Thames Valley Local Enterprise Partnership and Enlight, a consulting organisation.

Transport Secretary Chris Grayling said: "The Government is looking at numerous ways to keep our roads in the best condition.

“These trials will see how new technologies work in the real world to ensure our roads are built for the 21st century.”

Trials will take place in a host of counties with the nearest outside Bucks being Central Bedfordshire where geothermal energy created from paths will be used to keep car parks and bus stations in the area from freezing over.