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Transportation Technology

Glow-In-The-Dark Smart Highways Coming To the Netherlands In 2013 167

Posted by Soulskill
from the current-highways-suddenly-seem-stupid dept.
An anonymous reader writes "The Netherlands is moving forward with plans to build 'smart' highways that can become more easily visible in the dark or communicate weather conditions to drivers. Work will begin as early as next year. 'Special paint will also be used to paint markers like snowflakes across the road's surface — when temperatures fall to a certain point, these images will become visible, indicating that the surface will likely be slippery. Roosegaarde says this technology has been around for years, on things like baby food — the studio has just up-scaled it. The first few hundred meters of glow in the dark, weather-indicating road will be installed in the province of Brabant in mid-2013, followed by priority induction lanes for electric vehicles, interactive lights that switch on as cars pass and wind-powered lights within the next five years.'"
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Glow-In-The-Dark Smart Highways Coming To the Netherlands In 2013

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  • Re:So... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by infogulch (1838658) on Tuesday October 30, 2012 @06:10PM (#41824325)

    If there's enough snow on the road to cover up the paint, I really hope that drivers don't need a snowflake graphic to know that there is snow on the roads.

  • by Nationless (2123580) on Tuesday October 30, 2012 @06:18PM (#41824429)

    High friction surface which requires constant work and they want to paint it in temperature sensitive markings which will get covered in sot and worn down in a heartbeat? Prolonging any and all road maintenance.

    Why not just have a sign painted in the same material which does the same job, except you can actually see it a lot easier?

    I do like the idea of glow in the dark roads for increased visibility, but not for reading the temperature.

  • Re:Dirt Proof? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Lehk228 (705449) on Tuesday October 30, 2012 @06:24PM (#41824509) Journal
    the point is that these coatings respond to surface conditions, rather than just local area averages. great for bridges and other areas which freeze first
  • Re:Dirt Proof? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by arisvega (1414195) on Tuesday October 30, 2012 @06:25PM (#41824515)

    What happens when a really dirty set of tires [..] network those highways [..] use the computer [..] smartphone ..

    Relax, this is about Europe: most people there with cars actually already know how to drive them.

  • by hawguy (1600213) on Tuesday October 30, 2012 @07:11PM (#41825031)

    The first few hundred meters of glow in the dark, weather-indicating road will be installed in the province of Brabant in mid-2013

    They do realize .. you had to be outside to either get in the car or at least to pull out of the garage, right? Might notice things like "shit it's below freezing" or "shit it's snowy, roads might be slick". Just sayin'.

    I don't know if you've ever driving in winter conditions... but you do realize that road surface temperature differs from air temperature, and varies over time and distance? It might be 5 degrees when you leave your office, but by the time you reach your home outside of the city, it may have dropped to below freezing.

  • Re:Dirt Proof? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by fiannaFailMan (702447) on Tuesday October 30, 2012 @07:38PM (#41825305) Journal

    Wait - what happens to all the stripes on conventional highways when all those filthy, dirty tires run over them continuously? Oh, right, nothing.

    I guess you haven't figured out that durability of the paint is the only issue - things on the road would tend to be ground away by friction rather than building up layers of grime on top. Also, rubber is remarkably good at removing grime. Like that thing on the end of your pencil, which generally does the opposite of depositing grime on your nice, clean paper.

    But seriously, why am I doing your thinking for you?

    He's probably thinking of the road markings they have in California which disappear in the wet after dark. I don't know what kind of cheap pain they use in CA but it doesn't seem to have the same sparkle effect that striping has in the UK where, combined with cats' eyes, roads are lit up like a Christmas tree as soon as you shine your lights on them.

  • disappointed (Score:4, Insightful)

    by PopeRatzo (965947) on Tuesday October 30, 2012 @08:47PM (#41825941) Homepage Journal

    The first few hundred meters of glow in the dark, weather-indicating road will be installed in the province of Brabant in mid-2013, followed by priority induction lanes for electric vehicles, interactive lights that switch on as cars pass and wind-powered lights within the next five years.

    Those socialist hell-holes get all the good stuff.

    But we'll have the last laugh when the US becomes one big Foxconn dormitory, because we'll still have our liberty.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 30, 2012 @09:00PM (#41826009)

    I also drive in horrible winter conditions for almost half of the year and have had to deal with icy roads in almost every month of the year at some point. I've actually never been in an accident as a result. But my first thought in response to "no warning needed" is "screw you, I'll take every warning or indicator I can get if reasonably priced." Shit happens, not everyone is in perfect mental condition when driving, even seasoned drivers make misjudgements. Experience can at times almost be a risk at times, as people become complacent and cut corners. I've also seen enough drivers claim to be good or amazing drivers who actually aren't, and thought maybe I shouldn't assume I am above average either. I also realize the road shouldn't be built for what the good drivers can handle anyways, it should be built for what the bad drivers can handle, as they can take you out with them. Besides, you can chose to ignore the indicators, but you can't chose to pay attention to them if there not there.

    This not to say I think they should be installed everywhere... I would need to see the costs and effectiveness before supporting it. It is not like I am the type that thinks everyone should be driving 5 mph, as people still need to get from point A to B in a reasonable time.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday October 31, 2012 @12:50AM (#41827203)

    Because the warning light might as well say "UFO overhead." A freezing warning means nothing to someone who has no idea how to drive in such weather. As a former Calgarian (Alberta), suddenly finding yourself on a stretch of ice that not even ABS can handle requires a steady hand and a calm head. Experience has taught me what to do and how, and fortunately without a single dent in the process, but to an inexperienced driver it's plain panic, pumping the pedal pointlessly.

    End result: those people would still be in the ditch.

  • by rooie (2666495) on Wednesday October 31, 2012 @03:07AM (#41827647)
    Here in The Netherlands winter doesn't automatically means snow or temperatures below zero. So you can't see that roads are slippery. More often than not it's just below zero. The problem starts if it drizzled during the night and you only have ground frost. Then you get black ice. Which you don't see. Of course, if you walk towards your car you might know roads are slippery, but that doesn't guarantee that all roads are (or aren't) slippery.

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