Tuesday, January 15, 2013

I Want to Drive On Really Cool Glow in The Dark Pavement

Leave it to people in the Netherlands to come up with a really cool way to improve traffic safety.

They've taken to painting lines on dark roads with a photo luminescent powder, which makes lanes glow brightly in the dark.

This is a godsend to people like me, who have trouble seeing on particularly dark,  rainy nights while driving on unfamiliar roads. Apparently other people are worse at this than I am, judging from the alarming traffic patterns I sometimes see at night.
Photo luminescent paint on a road
in the Netherlands alerts motorists when
the road might have ice

Sunshine that  the paint absorbs during the day allows the material to glow for up to 10 hours at a time at night. That's true even in the weak winter northern hemispheric sun.

In some areas, they've used the paint to draw huge snowflake patterns on the pavement. You don't see the glowing snowflakes on the road until the temperature drops to 33 degrees or lower, because of the technology that went into the roadway.

When you see the giant snowflakes, that means the road is freezing or close to it, so it alerts motorists to slow down because there might be black ice.

The article says a design and technology company called Studio Roosegaate is behind these innovations. The pavement and pain in the Netherlands is a pilot project. If it works, it could spread throughout Europe.

If it works, I'd also like it to spread to the United States.

As an aside, I've been the beneficiary of some great ideas from great friends on what to post in this blog. The Netherlands highway paint idea came from Vermont's Denis Desjarlais, who has a habit of finding very cool articles. Thanks, Denis!

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