Blackfriars Bridge to Have a Solar Makeover

The solar panels will stretch the whole length of Blackfriars Bridge.
Source: http://www.geograph.org.uk/photo/16833 © Stuart Taylor

New plans have been approved for Blackfriars Bridge in London to fit 4,400 solar panels across the roof of the station. The panels cover in total, will be 6000 m2 London’s largest solar array and the world’s largest solar bridge. The bridge is estimated by the company overseeing it, Solarcentury, to produce 900,000kWh per year which will supply half of the station’s energy needs and reduce its carbon footprint by 511 tonnes of CO2 per year. The solar array will cost £7.3m to build and is funded by the Department of Transport’s environment and safety fund.

Solarcentury’s chief executive, Derry Newman says this installation will be a landmark demonstration of how solar energy works and an important step towards a clean energy future.

The only other known solar bridge is in Brisbane, Australia, the Kurilpa footbridge. There have also been 16,000 solar panels fitted on top of a train tunnel in Belgium which produce enough power to run all the trains in the country for one day a year.