Development of a Photovoltaic-Based Module for Harvesting Solar Energy from Pavement: A Lab and Field Assessment




Rahman, Musfira
Mabrouk, Gamal
Dessouky, Samer

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title



The concurrent worldwide energy crisis has become a strong incentive for researchers, governments, and industry professionals to focus on sustainable energy solutions. Consequently, pavement photovoltaic energy harvesting technologies, as one of the most common sustainable energy solutions, have recently seen a significant improvement, especially in the new innovative designs of pavement solar panels. In this study, an innovative design for a prototype energy harvesting system was proposed based on thin-film photovoltaic solar panels. In addition, the feasibility of utilizing the generated power of the proposed system to illuminate a pedestrian crosswalk to enhance the safety of an at-grade intersection was also analyzed. The designed prototype consists of a thin-film solar panel, a transparent cover to protect the solar panel, and a wooden frame to support the panel and distribute the load. Different materials for the transparent covering plates were investigated, including polycarbonate with varying thicknesses, textured GlassGrit, and textured float glass with corundum skid-resistant coating on the surface. Finite element analysis was also conducted to analyze the behavior of solar panel-incorporated layered asphalt pavement subjected to dynamic wheel loading. The results showed that the suggested model could sustain the structural loads of a moving wheel without failure. Experimental results of the study showed that considering the seven hours of operation on a typical sunny day, the proposed system could generate approximately 699 Watt-hour of power during 7 h of operation (9 a.m.–4 p.m.) from the 304.8 mm (12 inches) × 304.8 mm (12 inches) pavement solar panel.



photovoltaic energy, solar pavement, renewable energy, energy harvesting, roads and highways


Energies 16 (8): 3338 (2023)


Civil and Environmental Engineering, and Construction Management