This phosphorescent paint can make the road shine overnight!

Innovation: the start-up OliKrom invents a road paint that lights up at night

Photoluminescence in the road sector, More than encouraging tests

The start-up OliKrom based in Pessac (Gironde) specializes in intelligent pigments that react to heat, shocks and chemicals. Since October 2018, two kilometers of cycle path crossing an undergrowth have been in the test phase. However, this is a track with a phosphorescent paint containing pigments that absorb sunlight during the day, to better restore it at night.

According to the manufacturer, the phosphorescent effect can last about ten hours and can distinguish the road between 50 and 100 meters further than with a conventional paint. Also, the paint formula is the subject of a patent – and has obviously not been disclosed. A few years ago, we were talking about an intelligent motorway section using a similar process in the Netherlands. This experiment had been stopped in a few weeks. Today, the innovation developed by OliKrom offers all the guarantees of stability and lighting performance to allow deployment on road infrastructures.

Photoluminescent markings, Soon to be used on the road!

Now in the process of being approved for use on the road, the paint developed by OliKrom could be used to materialize anything a motorist may encounter. Indeed, it is a question of illuminating dangerous bends, pedestrian crossings, motorway slip roads, speed bumps and bus stops. In addition, it is a considerable advantage in rural areas where efficient lighting is not always present.

Price side, this paint is more expensive per liter compared to a classic white paint. However, it’s difficult to compare the two in terms of performance and cost savings. Indeed, the large investments usually made in wiring work for lighting will save just as much. The electricity bill should also be reduced for municipalities choosing to use this device!

OliKrom, the expert in color intelligence

The start-up OliKrom has developed a whole series of specialized pigments intended in particular for industrial use. These include, for example, industrial paints and coatings capable of changing color in the presence of a solvent (solvatochrome).

In addition, this same company has developed heat-sensitive coatings for the French aeronautical group Safran. We are talking about coatings to map the temperatures of each component of a running engine! The giant Airbus, meanwhile, recently ordered a piezochromic paint that could identify the impact area on the cabin of an aircraft, which could increase the efficiency of routine inspections.

Sources: CNRS Journal – Futura Sciences

Link to the article by Yohan Demeure, scientific editor, January 7, 2019, 12 h 20 min