When the tiny Swiss ski town of Tenna, population 112, needed to restore its dodgy old chair lift, the bigwigs decided to go solar.
The lift began operating in December. But there wasn't enough room on the roof for all the necessary solar panels, so a bridge of photovoltaic “wings” is suspended above the lift. The panels rotate to follow the sun and can tilt to shake off any excess snow – and they offer skiers a warm seat for their ride up.
According to Discovery News, the lift already produces twice as much power as it uses on a sunny day and is expected to generate more than 90,000 kilowatt hours annually.
Nifty idea, although we're not sure if our slopes would get enough sun for this to work here.