The first solar road has opened in Normandy, France. The kilometer-long stretch of road is expected to generate enough electricity to power a nearby village of over 3000 people.
Solar roads are a controversial and mostly untested new technology. A solar bike path was built two years ago in the Netherlands and only managed to generate enough electricity to power a single home. It was estimated that the cost of that bike path could pay for over 100 times as much electricity from other sources.
The solar road in France has even more of an uphill battle. In Normandy, where the road was built, there are typically less than two months of strong sunshine a year.
However, if this test produces as much power as it's expected to, and the company building the roads, , can bring down the costs of future panels, it's possible solar roads could become a good investment.