Netherlands debuts world's first solar-paneled cycle path

The Netherlands now has the world's first entirely solar-paneled cycle path.

The cycle path, that has been largely funded by local authorities, connects two suburbs in Amsterdam and converts the sun's energy into electricity for the grid.

The project has been in development since 2009 and cost an estimated US$3.8 million (S$4.9 million), reports RT. 

The path, stretching 80 metres between the Amsterdam suburbs of Krommenie and Wormerveer, will serve nearly 2,000 cyclists daily.

The path may be lengthened by 10 metres in 2016, The Guardian reports.

It has been operational since Oct 21, but is due to be officially opened next Wednesday (Nov 12).

Though the path will absorb less sunlight than solar panels on roofs, the surface's tilted angle and non-adhesive finish will keep the path clear and guarantee exposure.   

Developers are hoping that the electricity generated by the road can some day be used to power street lights, traffic systems and even electric cars driving on the path.

The surface, which is for general public usage, is currently capable of supplying power for three households. 

Scientists will be monitoring and testing the path for three years.  

The Netherlands Organization for Applied Scientific Research believes that in future, 20 per cent of the Netherlands' roads could be made of solar panels.

Source: RT