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Glow-in-the-dark roads make debut in Netherlands

 

Smart-Highway-glowing-lines-Studio-Roose

 

Light-absorbing glow-in-the-dark road markings have replaced streetlights on a 500m (0.3 mile) stretch of highway in the Netherlands.

Studio Roosegaarde promised the design back in 2012, and after cutting through rather a lot of government red tape we can finally see the finished product.

One Netherlands news report said, "It looks like you are driving through a fairytale," which pretty much sums up this extraordinary project. The studio aims to bring technology and design to the real world, with practical and beautiful results.

Back in October 2012, Daan Roosegaarde, the studio's founder and lead designer, told us: "One day I was sitting in my car in the Netherlands, and I was amazed by these roads we spend millions on but no one seems to care what they look like and how they behave. I started imagining this Route 66 of the future where technology jumps out of the computer screen and becomes part of us."

Part of that vision included weather markings?snowdrops, for instance, would appear when the temperature reached a certain level. For now though, the stretch of the N329 highway in Oss features only the glow-in-the-dark road markings, created using a photo-luminescent powder integrated into the road paint, developed in conjunction with road construction company Heijmans.

 

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This sort of paint would be nice to have on unlit back roads, especially the more windy ones. 

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Sounds like a great idea, makes the lines much more visible at night and looks pretty funky too.

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Is there an actual picture of what this looks like, rather than a mock up?

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Whoa, looks like Rad Racer!

 

rad-racer-2-201307281624423.jpg

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Nice idea.. surprised somebody hasn't thought of that before. Yea, curious as to what it really looks like too, that and durability. 

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Is there an actual picture of what this looks like, rather than a mock up?

 

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_65144877_65144876.jpg

 

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^ Thanks for the actual pics. Looks neat. :)

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^ Thanks for the actual pics. Looks neat. :)

Do a whole city's streets like that.. bet that would make for a wicked view via Google Earth.

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This kind of paint has been around for a while, surprised its taken so long to start using it. At least here in Georgia, they use reflectors on every few lines. I still would prefer this paint idea, but am curious how long the paint lasts on the road

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This would be really handy around here.  There are some roads here in downtown areas where there will be 2 or 3 lanes, and if the roads get wet it's hard to tell where the lines are even with the street lights.

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This kind of paint has been around for a while, surprised its taken so long to start using it. At least here in Georgia, they use reflectors on every few lines. I still would prefer this paint idea, but am curious how long the paint lasts on the road

Yeah. With cars constantly driving over them and dust / dirt build-up over time I do wonder how effective they'll be. We've already seen in the UK that the repainting of road lines has been impacted by council budget cuts and that would be a lot more dangerous here given the lack of road lights.

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Great idea. The energy saving benefits must be good and let's face it, street lights and the accompanying glow are horrible.

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There is a roundabout in Hatfield that would benefit from this stuff...

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Great idea. The energy saving benefits must be good and let's face it, street lights and the accompanying glow are horrible.

It is horribly ugly to be driving through a nice country area at night and have a "sky glow" from all the street lamps in the nearest town.

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This kind of paint has been around for a while, surprised its taken so long to start using it. At least here in Georgia, they use reflectors on every few lines. I still would prefer this paint idea, but am curious how long the paint lasts on the road

Yeah, that's what I'm wondering too. A great idea, but how long does the paint last before it loses it's luminosity?

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Yeah, that's what I'm wondering too. A great idea, but how long does the paint last before it loses it's luminosity?

 

There's also weather conditions to consider. What happens when the snow covers it? Great idea anyway, but I don't think it'll replace street lights any time soon.

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Yeah. With cars constantly driving over them and dust / dirt build-up over time I do wonder how effective they'll be. We've already seen in the UK that the repainting of road lines has been impacted by council budget cuts and that would be a lot more dangerous here given the lack of road lights.

I see no reason why the paint binder would be different and make the lines physically less durable. Meanwhile, phosphorescence in darkness is much easier to see than reflection from a non-glowing painted line, meaning that the road markings could withstand greater degradation while remaining visible compared to traditional paints.

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This is a pretty good idea :) Odd it hasn't been implemented before though...

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I see no reason why the paint binder would be different and make the lines physically less durable.

I was referring more to the rubber and dirt left on top of the markings, which could impact the phosphorescence. They shouldn't wear away any quicker physically but the phosphorescent effect might be greatly diminished.

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The thing is, reflectors would still be needed on top of this on some roads. Imagine a cloudy week, doubt these would build up much luminescence 

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I was referring more to the rubber and dirt left on top of the markings, which could impact the phosphorescence. They shouldn't wear away any quicker physically but the phosphorescent effect might be greatly diminished.

I'm not convinced that these would impact the phosphorescent markings to a greater degree than normal painted marks.

The thing is, reflectors would still be needed on top of this on some roads. Imagine a cloudy week, doubt these would build up much luminescence

It would need to be very, very cloudy. The sun, as light sources go, is obscenely bright. And anyway, they'd regenerate from car headlights - especially well off the annoying blue LEDs.

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I'm not convinced that these would impact the phosphorescent markings to a greater degree than normal painted marks.

I'm not convinced either, it's just a potential concern. Even if they're just as durable if they're used in place of street lighting and aren't replaced promptly when they've worn away then that will pose a safety risk. My concern is that while it seems like a great idea in principle councils can't be trusted to maintain them properly.

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There's also weather conditions to consider. What happens when the snow covers it? Great idea anyway, but I don't think it'll replace street lights any time soon.

Same thing that happens when snow covers regular white lines on unlit street. You don't see them ;)

And anyway, they'd regenerate from car headlights - especially well off the annoying blue LEDs.

xenon? They're not LED :p

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