InfraStripe helped sponsor an initiative that measured the retroreflectivity of pavement markings across America in order to improve pavement markings for both human and machine drivers.
What is Retroreflectivity?
Road markings and signs reflect light that hits them back towards on-coming vehicles. The name for this optical engineering is “retroreflectivity.” Retroreflectivity is a relative newcomer to the road safety scene. The Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) established minimum retroreflectivity standards in its 2003 revision. Road marking and sign retroreflectivity is measured in mcd/m2/lx (millicandelas per square meter per lux). The measurement seeks to account for factors such as:
- Luminance: the amount of the light the driver sees reflected from the markings.
- Contrast: how the sign/marking stands out from its surroundings and background.
- Conspicuity: how likely it is that the driver will notice the messaging.
- Legibility: how clear and easy to interpret the messaging is.
- Visibility: how far away the sign/marking can be seen.
High levels of retroreflectivity increase driver awareness, response time, and overall safety. Take a look at these infographics visualizing the scope and results of the study. (We hope you find them as interesting as we did, but we do realize that sometimes we get a little nerdy about this kind of thing.) At any rate, InfraStripe is proud to be part of national efforts to save lives, and we wanted to let you know about ongoing industry initiatives to improve our country’s roadways!