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This phosphorescent paint can make the road shine overnight! 07 January 2019

A French start-up has developed an interesting idea: a phosphorescent paint shining in the night.

Peinture photoluminescente LuminoKrom – OliKrom©Already tested in real conditions on a section of cycle path, this paint should have a bright future ahead of it! 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.

Photoluminescent paint, More than encouraging tests

LuminoKrom® photoluminescent paint contributes to the emergence of tomorrow’s infrastructures which must be safer, more economical and more eco-responsible. This innovation has been labeled by the “Route du Futur” program of ADEME. LuminoKrom® marking exploits the natural phenomenon of photoluminescence. This physical process allows the paint to recharge indefinitely in daylight or artificial lighting without any fatigue.

LuminoKrom® innovation lies in having developed photoluminescent markings that are very resistant outdoors and capable of storing the surrounding light to emit a diffuse luminosity at night, visible for more than 10 hours. This patented innovation was developed within the R&D department of OliKrom. Several years of research and collaboration with the Eiffage Group were necessary to obtain a paint conforming to road use, combining coverage, colorimetry and chemical stability with optimal luminous performance in terms of intensity and duration.

Luminescent marking, 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!

The OliKrom range

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