Good Thinking

Glow-in-the-dark bike path lights the way in Poland

Glow-in-the-dark bike path lig...
Work on Lidzbark Warminski's glow-in-the-dark bike path began about a year ago
Work on Lidzbark Warminski's glow-in-the-dark bike path began about a year ago
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Work on Lidzbark Warminski's glow-in-the-dark bike path began about a year ago
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Work on Lidzbark Warminski's glow-in-the-dark bike path began about a year ago
The material used to create the glowing effect is a fine aggregate containing inorganic luminophores
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The material used to create the glowing effect is a fine aggregate containing inorganic luminophores
For additional safety, the glowing aggregate was covered with a layer of small stone grits
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For additional safety, the glowing aggregate was covered with a layer of small stone grits
Exposure to 30-60 minutes of daylight is enough to make the path glow for at least 8 hours overnight
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Exposure to 30-60 minutes of daylight is enough to make the path glow for at least 8 hours overnight
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Two years ago, Studio Roosegaarde created a glow-in-the-dark bike path in Eindhoven, Netherlands, helping to light the route in a exciting way. Inspired by that, a materials technology center in Lidzbark Warminski, Poland, has followed suit, with equally dazzling results.

The materials tech center, TPA Gesellschaft für Qualitätssicherung und Innovation (TPAQI), tells New Atlas that it first drew attention to the Eindhoven bike path at a local road forum event. The underlying concept was floated as a potential option for creating something that would reflect the beauty of the surrounding landscape.

Work began about a year ago, with lab tests into how the glowing effect would be created. A variety of different materials and colors were tested, with the aim of creating something that would both look great and that would increase safety for cyclists and pedestrians.

Ultimately, a fine aggregate containing inorganic luminophores (light-emitting constituents) was chosen. The phosphorescent material is "charged" by sunlight and emits a blue luminescence, which becomes visible in the dark. A layer of this aggregate was applied to a trial 100-m (328-ft) section of an existing asphalt bike path and, for additional safety, this was covered with a layer of small stone grits.

Exposure to 30-60 minutes of daylight is enough to make the path glow for at least 8 hours overnight
Exposure to 30-60 minutes of daylight is enough to make the path glow for at least 8 hours overnight

TPAQI says exposure to 30-60 minutes of daylight is enough to make the path glow for at least eight hours overnight. It believes the material should retain its glowing properties for about 20 years. As part of the trial, the durability of the glow-in-the-dark section is being observed under real-world conditions.

The project was completed at the end of September.

Source: TPAQI

View gallery - 4 images
4 comments
shinnam
Where is this path in Poland? How far does it go? ( I'm doing a ride from Gdansk to Malbork next week and I would make a side trip to see it.
Tommo
What a fantastic application - I can see this being popular all over the world. Not just for cycle paths but for everything you could imagine.
The projected application cost is not covered though so I'd imagine its expensive.
Michael Shewell
This is a product of Pro-Teq Surfaces in the U.K. Two years ago I proposed doing a path in Northern Michigan but with this material but they were over extended. Since then, they've changed their business model and I'll be approaching them again. Thanks for the encouragement. Addressing the comment below, it isn't expensive in absolute dollars and a hell of an ROI.
Nathaneal Blemings
As someone else said these products have been around for awhile, i remember looking at them many years ago and there was a few companies making them... some of them can just be applied with a roller although there might be a few steps.... seems based on the article they are making their own formulation but probably has same base ingrediants in it.
Still, great application... im dubious it lasts all night at same strength but if it does thats awesome.