Back in 2018, Hungary-based tech company Platio announced its goal of introducing the world to the aesthetically-pleasing solar pavement, which could partially replace home driveways and provide clean energy to households. Flash forward two years, and Platio has just installed its first solar pavement for use on a residential driveway, showing everyone that solar panels belong in more places than just the roof.
The design consists of interlocking units called Platio solar pavers. Each paver is made from 400 recycled PET plastic bottles for a product more durable than concrete, according to the company’s product video. Pavement can be installed in sizes of 10 to 30 square meters and is suitable for driveways, terraces, balconies, and patios. The energy generated by Platio tiles is fed back to the household’s power network. A 20-square-meter solar pavement can cover the yearly energy consumption of an average household, according to the video.
The developers aimed for aesthetically pleasing tiles that would look good in a driveway and would increase a home’s energy efficiency. The solar pavers are available in black, red, blue and green. Hardened glass tiles protect the solar cells. They are anti-slip, so people can safely walk on them, and the tiles are designed to be able to bear the weight of a car occasionally driving over.
Attempts to create solar roads have thus far been a failure, but with far fewer cars riding on these new solar driveways, there’s reason to believe Patio’s solar pavement will fare better.