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

Soulskill posted about 2 years ago | from the current-highways-suddenly-seem-stupid dept.

Transportation 167

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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This technology would've been introduced long ago (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41824247)

but cautious corporate officials decided to wait for AOL Netscape's patent on the "blink" tag to expire.

The War On Common Sense (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41824847)

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'.

Like the weather station telling me it is raining right now. Yeah no shit, I can look out the window and I can hear it on the roof.

As an American, I want my country to monopolize this war on common sense. Americans don't look at road markings - that's why their SUVs are always weaving across the double-yellow at least a few times a minute. Everybody doing that makes it easy for drunk drivers to get away with it too. Oh and actually watching traffic conditions and road painting might mean putting down the cellphone we're texting on or the cheeseburger we're eating because we're fat and it's been a while 20 minutes since we last ate a 1000 calorie meal. We have to do this as much as possible because soon self-driving cars will remove the thrill of being a stupid and unnecessary threat to everyone else!

And that's the American Way. It's about time these damned Netherlands people realized they're stealing our anti-intellectual property.

Re:The War On Common Sense (4, Insightful)

hawguy (1600213) | about 2 years ago | (#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:The War On Common Sense (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41825233)

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.

I'm one of those weird guys who believes in fixing a problem at the source of the problem.

Anyone who doesn't understand that and think it's bleedin' obvious is not qualified to drive a car and should never receive a license until they get a clue.

Unlike this proposal, it would SAVE money, not cost money.

Re:The War On Common Sense (3, Funny)

hawguy (1600213) | about 2 years ago | (#41825483)

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.

I'm one of those weird guys who believes in fixing a problem at the source of the problem.

Anyone who doesn't understand that and think it's bleedin' obvious is not qualified to drive a car and should never receive a license until they get a clue.

Unlike this proposal, it would SAVE money, not cost money.

How do you know it would SAVE money to not have freeze warning indicators painted on the roads? They didn't give any price for the indicators in the article, nor did they give any estimate of how many accidents it could prevent.

If it costs $1000/mile to paint the indicators on the roads, and prevents one $10,000 accident per 10 miles, then it would break even.

I don't know about the drivers in the Netherlands, but I can say with some certainty that many of the licensed drivers in the USA indeed do not have a clue. This is especially evident when driving to the mountains on ski weekends and seeing the reckless driving and accidents from out-of-area drivers that really have no clue about how to drive safely in winter conditions since they only drive in snow 3 weekends a year in a rented SUV. I think drivers like this would definitely benefit from freeze warning indicators.

Re:The War On Common Sense (1)

Lumpy (12016) | about 2 years ago | (#41825909)

Buick and BMW cars have had freeze warning sensors in them cince 1979. Why is this not stock in all cars made?

Re:The War On Common Sense (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41825273)

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.

I drive in "winter conditions" 5-7 months every year. And I see no use for warnings built into the road. Yes - road surface temperature vary over time and vary from air temperature. But everybody knows that very well, so no warning needed. Winter conditions hold no surprises . . .

Re:The War On Common Sense (3, Funny)

flibbajobber (949499) | about 2 years ago | (#41825353)

I drive in "winter conditions" 5-7 months every year...

So you're familiar with it. This kind of system would be entirely appropriate for somewhere that gets frozen-road conditions only a few days of the year, or areas that experience high amounts of traffic from out-of-towners.

This is for the visitors - the kind of idiot who follows his GPS into a lake - not the locals.

Re:The War On Common Sense (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#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.

Re:The War On Common Sense (2)

Lumpy (12016) | about 2 years ago | (#41825895)

I drive in massive snow, and a "glow in the dark" road will be useless as it will be under 1 foot of snow.

Re:The War On Common Sense (1)

hawguy (1600213) | about 2 years ago | (#41826447)

I drive in massive snow, and a "glow in the dark" road will be useless as it will be under 1 foot of snow.

If you can't tell from the 12 inches of snow on the road that the road may be slippery, perhaps you're not cut out for driving.

But if you're in an area that doesn't get a lot of permanent snow, yet temperatures hover around freezing, you might find this more useful.

Re:The War On Common Sense (1)

camperdave (969942) | about 2 years ago | (#41826921)

If it's got a foot of snow on it, it's likely not very slippery. It's the thin sheen of ice that's dangerous. You can go from good traction to no traction in a fraction of a second.

Re:The War On Common Sense (1)

eugene ts wong (231154) | about 2 years ago | (#41826983)

It depends on the climate, I think. In some places, the snow is very dry. In other places, there is a thick solid layer of ice underneath.

I'm so surprised that so many people seem opposed to this.

In the parts of Canada that I've been to, we get thick layers of ice on the road, and it can be covered up by snow. Even in a story that I read, it was common for the characters to skate to school. When I was in college in Alberta, I would go about in a skating motion from building to building, when it was slippery enough. They could put salt on the walkways, but the bottom line is that life happens.

Re:The War On Common Sense (2)

AK Marc (707885) | about 2 years ago | (#41825373)

I've driven from Dallas to Fargo in one day. Dallas was warm. Fargo was less so. If it passed below freezing, I wouldn't know. Yes, I got out to fill up, and it was colder than TX, but no idea on what the temperature was. Though many cars have temperature, which seems a better way to gauge, unless the air temp is significantly different than the road temperature.

Dutch dykes (-1, Troll)

Vinegar Joe (998110) | about 2 years ago | (#41824259)

Why don't Dutch dykes have glow-in-the-dark holes so we know where to stick our fingers?

Re:Dutch dykes (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41824405)

If you'd written "dike" instead of "dyke", maybe your joke would have been amusingly relevant instead of offensive.

Re:Dutch dykes (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41824555)

If you'd written "dike" instead of "dyke", maybe your joke would have been amusingly relevant instead of offensive.

Either way, you still have to stick your finger in 'em.

Re:Dutch dykes (2)

thebeige (2555996) | about 2 years ago | (#41824659)

If you'd written "dike" instead of "dyke", maybe your joke would have been amusingly relevant instead of offensive.

Either way, you still have to stick your finger in 'em.

But then your finger would glow!

Re:Dutch dykes (2)

Vinegar Joe (998110) | about 2 years ago | (#41824689)

If you'd written "dike" instead of "dyke", maybe your joke would have been amusingly relevant instead of offensive.

dyke (plural dykes)
low dry-stone wall
hedge

http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/dyke [wiktionary.org]

Re:Dutch dykes (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41824883)

If you'd written "dike" instead of "dyke", maybe your joke would have been amusingly relevant instead of offensive.

If you're really that easily offended .. what the hell are you DOING on the internet?!

Re:Dutch dykes (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41824959)

If you'd written "dike" instead of "dyke", maybe your joke would have been amusingly relevant instead of offensive.

Easily offended types like you already neutered TV, newspapers, radio, and made USA the laughing stock of the world over one breast during a half-time show.

Do you guys ever get together and say "yep, maybe we've done enough damage?" Do you ever say "hey maybe I should control myself and what I choose to expose myself and my family to, man that sure would be easier than trying to censor and guilt-trip-control the whole rest of the world!"

Re:Dutch dykes (2)

xstonedogx (814876) | about 2 years ago | (#41825431)

You say that like "guilt-trip-control" is a means to an end. It's not.

So... (3, Funny)

symes (835608) | about 2 years ago | (#41824263)

How will drivers see glow in the dark images when there is snow on the roads?

Re:So... (5, Informative)

pokoteng (2729771) | about 2 years ago | (#41824301)

It's often black ice that is invisible on the roads that causes slipping, rather than visibly obvious snow. That is probably what this targets. Snow is an obvious indicator that road is dangerous, and this paint fixes parts where you can't easily see that.

Re:So... (0)

oodaloop (1229816) | about 2 years ago | (#41824389)

Yeah, it's like the weather rock I had as a kid.

If rock is wet, it is raining.
If rock is white, it is snowing.
If unable to see rock, it is foggy.

Re:So... (0)

JustOK (667959) | about 2 years ago | (#41825013)

Only detects high winds, 'tho.

Re:So... (2)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about 2 years ago | (#41825189)

And it keeps tigers away.

Re:So... (1)

JustOK (667959) | about 2 years ago | (#41825605)

What about Ninja Tigers on holiday? You can never be sure.

Re:So... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41825047)

Yeah, it's like the weather rock I had as a kid. If rock is wet, it is raining. If rock is white, it is snowing. If unable to see rock, it is foggy.

Did it work?

Re:So... (1)

DarthBling (1733038) | about 2 years ago | (#41825267)

This would be great on bridges!

Re:So... (1)

dinfinity (2300094) | about 2 years ago | (#41825699)

You know, bridges are actually one of the few places where this might make sense.

Realistically though:
"The Netherlands is moving forward with plans to build 'smart' highways" and "The first few hundred meters of glow in the dark, weather-indicating road will be installed" aren't really the same.

This is where I stopped taking TFA seriously:

"One day I was sitting in my car in the Netherlands, and I was amazed by these roads we spend millions on but no one seems to care what they look like and how they behave," the designer behind the concept, Daan Roosegaarde

(my emphasis)

Apparently, this visionary had to compete with 6 other entries: http://www.dutchdesignawards.nl/en/finalists/future_concepts/ [dutchdesignawards.nl]

I'd have given it to one of the last two as they actually seem to be promising for improving the quality of life, but I guess 'glow in the dark smart highways' sounds better and more designy.
Well, it got 'em on Slashdot..

Re:So... (4, Insightful)

infogulch (1838658) | about 2 years ago | (#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.

Re:So... (1, Informative)

p0p0 (1841106) | about 2 years ago | (#41824393)

The fact that there is snow would indicate that there might in fact be snow or ice on the road. Thanks for playing.

Dirt Proof? (2)

parallel_prankster (1455313) | about 2 years ago | (#41824321)

What happens when a really dirty set of tires goes over these markings on the road continuously? If they are not visible, will that lead to more accidents? It seems like a "smarter" thing to do would be to somehow network these highways electronically or using WiFi or something so that you can then use the computer in your car or smartphone to get very localized information about the conditions on the road on which you are driving.

Re:Dirt Proof? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41824447)

All Dutch highways are inspected at least once per 24hrs with human eyeballs, so I do not expect this to be a problem.

Re:Dirt Proof? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41826173)

All Dutch highways are inspected at least once per 24hrs with human eyeballs, so I do not expect this to be a problem.

If those eyeballs are anything like an Americans, it won't matter if you have it being scanned once every 24 seconds...no one will give a shit enough to speak up.

And I do mean no one.

Re:Dirt Proof? (4, Insightful)

Lehk228 (705449) | about 2 years ago | (#41824509)

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? (5, Insightful)

arisvega (1414195) | about 2 years ago | (#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.

Re:Dirt Proof? (2)

fiannaFailMan (702447) | about 2 years ago | (#41825279)

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.

I know. Stuff like this can be hard to explain to people from a country where they actually ask if you can drive a car with a gearstick. I remember seeing an automatic in Europe once, and I thought "WTF is this?"

Re:Dirt Proof? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41826387)

Modern technology?

In a couple of milleniums the alien archaeologists discover the remains of a vehicle. The report says "We didn't find any organic remains, but we can conclude that the creatures who used this device were, on average, slightly under two metres in height and had thee arms and three legs".

Re:Dirt Proof? (3, Funny)

parallel_prankster (1455313) | about 2 years ago | (#41825347)

Really, then why the hell are these paintings being developed? Why don't Europeans just drive properly through the black snow shit! I am tired of the Europeans can drive nonsense. The US just has far more drivers and far more emphasis on driving a person vehicle as compared to other countries and hence it gets a bad name. The point of this article is not that, the point in making these improvements is to remove any human errors out of the equation. Now what is the best way to provide current weather conditions to the driver. By painting the roads or via some technology in their car??

Re:Dirt Proof? (3, Interesting)

pixelpusher220 (529617) | about 2 years ago | (#41825833)

The US just has far more drivers and far more emphasis on driving a person vehicle as compared to other countries and hence it gets a bad name.

Given how much 'emphasis' you say we put on driving, you'd think we'd be better at it no?

Have you been to Europe? In Germany, it takes literally almost 2 years to get your license. Driving school is that long and costs a couple thousand dollars if memory serves.

Compare that to the US where everyone gets their license after 20 minutes test consisting of a K-turn and nothing over 45 mph. Who do you think turns out better drivers?

People routinely fail driving tests in Europe, because driving really is a 'privilege' and they make it hard to earn.

We on the other hand let damn near anyone drive.

Re:Dirt Proof? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41826029)

Have you been to Europe? In Germany, it takes literally almost 2 years to get your license.

Some states in the US use a graduated licensing system, meaning you get a permit at age 15, can drive alone at 16, can have a passenger at 17, and finally are allowed to drive at night when it is not work or education related at the age of 18. It varies from state to state but it isn't as simple as

everyone gets their license after 20 minutes test consisting of a K-turn and nothing over 45 mph.

There is no state that has done this in the last half of a century. I can understand if you are not aware of it, but please don't throw things like this around as facts.

People routinely fail driving tests in Europe, because driving really is a 'privilege' and they make it hard to earn.

We on the other hand let damn near anyone drive.

Re:Dirt Proof? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41826133)

In both California and Texas if the driver isn't of school age it's just a drive round the block, couple of stop signs and a parallel park. That and a common sense theory test. Hardly a challenge. School age may be harder, though.

Re:Dirt Proof? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41825903)

Da Fuck?

Georgia only recently made people take their driving test on actual streets.

Re:Dirt Proof? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41824801)

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?

Re:Dirt Proof? (1, Insightful)

fiannaFailMan (702447) | about 2 years ago | (#41825305)

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.

Re:Dirt Proof? (3, Interesting)

houghi (78078) | about 2 years ago | (#41824941)

What happens when a really dirty set of tires goes over these markings on the road continuously?

The same as happens with current signalization.
I have never seen this to be an issue, so why would it be one now?

Re:Dirt Proof? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41825287)

> "What happens when a really dirty set of tires goes over these markings on the road continuously?"
Well, my guess after a few seconds thought, would be that the dirt covers the markings for the next FEW meters while the dirt wears off the tires.
Then a specialised cleaning system could come in to play to show the markings again. Lets call that 'rain'.

Re:Dirt Proof? (1)

pixelpusher220 (529617) | about 2 years ago | (#41825619)

Perhaps you haven't been paying attention to actual driving currently. Roads already have lines and symbols on them that seem to stay pretty visible after literally billions of miles being driven over them by all manner of cars carrying all manner of dirt.

Re:Dirt Proof? (1)

khallow (566160) | about 2 years ago | (#41826821)

I'd be concerned about snowplows. Fancy markings get scrapped off pretty fast. OTOH, it'd be good for places that rarely see snow, which sounds like part of the target audience.

Obligatory XKCD regarding the wind-powered tech (4, Insightful)

milbournosphere (1273186) | about 2 years ago | (#41824363)

This is a bad idea, right? (4, Insightful)

Nationless (2123580) | about 2 years ago | (#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:This is a bad idea, right? (1)

hawguy (1600213) | about 2 years ago | (#41824945)

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.

Because the sign 2 meters above the road surface is not at the same temperature as the road?

If knowing the ambient temperature were sufficient, then it would be easier to have cars do the warning -- some cars already warn you when the outside temperature approaches freezing, but that still doesn't really tell you the temperature of the road surface.

Re:This is a bad idea, right? (2)

mrbester (200927) | about 2 years ago | (#41825185)

Then have sensors on the road. At the side, obviously, so they don't get smashed. The information is relayed to solar powered signs.

Re:This is a bad idea, right? (2)

hawguy (1600213) | about 2 years ago | (#41825295)

Then have sensors on the road. At the side, obviously, so they don't get smashed. The information is relayed to solar powered signs.

Because that negates the "no maintenace" part that the previous poster was talking about?

The linked to article shows these snowflakes painted every meter or so along the road. A single kilometer would have hundreds of them. Maintaining a network of hundreds of solar powered temperature sensors sounds a lot more labor intensive that repainting the temperature indicating snowflakes periodically when they restripe the roads.

Re:This is a bad idea, right? (1)

mrbester (200927) | about 2 years ago | (#41826313)

Repainting roads is a lot of effort and, unless they do it at low to zero traffic times (not here they don't), causes hassle for everybody. So it only gets done about once in ten years.

Solar powered signs are low maintenance. There are hundreds on UK roads attached to speed radar sensors to annoy you as you approach (most seem to be set to go off even if you aren't speeding). Putting a SIM in them means they can call home so you know when one has failed. This stuff is *cheap* and just needs one guy in a van that needn't block anybody with a toolkit and some spare parts.

Re:This is a bad idea, right? (1)

hawguy (1600213) | about 2 years ago | (#41826511)

Repainting roads is a lot of effort and, unless they do it at low to zero traffic times (not here they don't), causes hassle for everybody. So it only gets done about once in ten years.

Solar powered signs are low maintenance. There are hundreds on UK roads attached to speed radar sensors to annoy you as you approach (most seem to be set to go off even if you aren't speeding). Putting a SIM in them means they can call home so you know when one has failed. This stuff is *cheap* and just needs one guy in a van that needn't block anybody with a toolkit and some spare parts.

In my area they already paint lines on the road, so having another truck (or the same truck) paint the temperature sensitive snowflakes at the same time as they stripe the rest of the road doesn't sound like a whole lot more work for the government or inconvenience to other drivers.

The road around here where I think this could be useful is about 50 km long up a mountain pass, heavily used by out-of-area skiers who have little winter driving experience - if they put these solar powered sensors every 10 meters (since the snowflakes are painted every few meters), they'd have to maintain 5000 of them. I'm finding it hard to believe that 5000 solar powered sensors (especially if they are cellular enabled with SIM cards, which wouldn't even work on most of the road due to poor cell phone coverage) is "cheap" or easier to maintain than some snowflakes that get repainted periodically when they restripe the road.

If you're talking about putting in the sensors every km or so, then it might be more affordable, while also being less useful than the painted indicators since microclimates, shade from the sun, underroad culverts, etc) can make a big difference in road temperature even across short distances.

Re:This is a bad idea, right? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41826755)

I love the signs on I-81 in Pennsylvania warning of "dense fog ahead"... you then continue to drive and there is absolutely no fog. Whether those are set by hand and left or there are actually sensors relaying info, dunno (some are the temp signs on the side of the road, but those are always there, so I figure they just haven't gotten the money to do a more permanent install) and some are the signs over the roadway).

Re:This is a bad idea, right? (2)

houghi (78078) | about 2 years ago | (#41825045)

They are painting on the roads now. They will just use a different paint.

And I would be very happy to know that the road is around 0C so I know to watch out for ice.

Having that on the road, especially at night, will be a great addition to roadsigns. Why choose if you can have both?

The snow part is not the nicest part. What I like is the glow in the dark lines. It could save a LOT of money in Belgium and other countries.

Re:This is a bad idea, right? (2)

thePowerOfGrayskull (905905) | about 2 years ago | (#41825087)

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

HAve you ever driven on clean black pavement in the rain at night, in a well-lit area?

The reflections make it really hard to discern markings. I can only imagine that in the right circumstances, this will make it worse.

Re:This is a bad idea, right? (2)

viperidaenz (2515578) | about 2 years ago | (#41825251)

If only the paint could change the wavelength of the light, it would make it stand out more in the presence of reflected light. Wait, that's phosphorescence. Like glow in the dark paint.

Re:This is a bad idea, right? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41826743)

In the southern US they put down reflectors ... makes a world of a difference at being able to discern where the road is when the road is wet and it's nighttime. The excuse I've heard for not doing that in Northern states is that the snow plows would tear up the reflectors. But then I see a few roads (mainly the Interstates) where they did a slight groove down into the road and put the reflector in there. I've seen versions of that which result in useless reflectors and versions of that which result in reflects about halfway between useless and the ones glued onto the road surface. Huge huge safety feature. The reflective paint used for the road lines is only put down once a year and is worthless within two months of being put down (and never useful when the road is wet).

Re:This is a bad idea, right? (1)

fiannaFailMan (702447) | about 2 years ago | (#41825315)

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.

Do you come from some country where there's no lane markings?

Re:This is a bad idea, right? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41825931)

No its a fucking brilliant idea.

And in case you haven't noticed, they already paint lines on the road, even put little reflectors in the road as well.

This technology (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41824453)

has been around for years, on things like baby food....

And Coors Light beer cans.

Interactive lights (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41824457)

interactive lights that switch on as cars pass

That sounds impressively unhelpful and annoying.

Re:Interactive lights (1)

jo_ham (604554) | about 2 years ago | (#41825041)

interactive lights that switch on as cars pass

That sounds impressively unhelpful and annoying.

Why?

I'm going to assume that it leads your vehicle by some distance, so that you are driving into lit road. If no cars pass for a short time, it turns off. I doubt it will literally come on as your car passes the particular light in question.

Great for tourism (1, Flamebait)

Beerdood (1451859) | about 2 years ago | (#41824511)

Now if the Netherlands would re-relax their laws concerning foreigners purchasing recreational drugs, I could really see a huge spike in tourism next year

We already have this here. (5, Funny)

dccase (56453) | about 2 years ago | (#41824527)

Our roads turn white to signal that it is snowing.

Re:We already have this here. (2)

MartinSchou (1360093) | about 2 years ago | (#41825213)

And what does it do when it hasn't snowed, the air temperature is above freezing, but random parts of the road is below freezing and there's a light drizzle?

This tends to form a very localized phenomenon known as black ice - patches of road that look innocuous but are about as slippery as it gets.

Re:We already have this here. (1)

viperidaenz (2515578) | about 2 years ago | (#41825275)

Our roads stay the same colour when they're covered in ice.

pretty damm cool. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41824531)

I'm glad there's at least one country on the planet with a clue. Or at least way more than anyplace else.

Real world testing please (2)

ehud42 (314607) | about 2 years ago | (#41824739)

There's a stretch of highway by my place that has these really cool LED lights countersunk into the centre line that I'm sure were marketed as a great way to increase safety. The stretch of highway is a narrow 2 lane non-divided temporary by pass around a construction zone (major interchange being built to no where).

The problem with these fancy LEDs is they are so dim that I actually find myself quite distracted trying to determine if they are in fact glowing. Had they gone with a much lower tech solution of putting countersunk reflectors, my headlights would have gladly lit up the centre line.

Glow in the dark stickers, etc. only work when the surrounding area is really dark, otherwise there just isn't enough contrast.

I hope this tech provides a significant visual contrast or else it will just be a distracting and annoying waste of money.

Re:Real world testing please (1)

houghi (78078) | about 2 years ago | (#41825099)

I hope this tech provides a significant visual contrast or else it will just be a distracting and annoying waste of money.

I see it as the glow in the dark watches. During the day they are white. During the night they glow green.

I also see this as an addition not a complete alternative, to other things.

Google's True Intent (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41824769)

Now you know why Google wants self-driving cars. Then you don't have to pay attention to driving. Then they can put ads on the roads!

Who remembers Freezy Freakies? (1)

EmagGeek (574360) | about 2 years ago | (#41824793)

Now coming to a road near you!

Yes they probalby will. (1)

epSos-de (2741969) | about 2 years ago | (#41824873)

Germany already has glowing lines and signs. The stripes on the major roads are highly reflective, so you need no glowing paint, as long as you have good lights. Some signs are also luminescent, but do not glow as much as it was proposed in the pictures of this design. German car manufacturers have been thinking about inductive charging too. The Electricity in here is expensive, so the proposal with inefficient charging was not welcomed by reality. I believe that the city of Dresden was thinking about inductive charging for trams and buses. Not sure what became of that, but they probably will do it after the state financed university will figure out how to do it cheaper than gasoline, diesel and gas.

Inductive lanes? (2)

hawguy (1600213) | about 2 years ago | (#41824955)

What are the "priority induction lanes for electric vehicles"? Do they inductively charge electric vehicles? Are they toll lanes to pay for the electricity?

Re:Inductive lanes? (3, Informative)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about 2 years ago | (#41825229)

Apparently it's the former: here [popsci.com]

Re:Inductive lanes? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41825289)

Does anyone measure the health impact of this sort of thing? What if you were walking on this part of the road?

Re:Inductive lanes? (1)

AK Marc (707885) | about 2 years ago | (#41825577)

What health impact?

Re:Inductive lanes? (1)

hawguy (1600213) | about 2 years ago | (#41825627)

What health impact?

You know, the improvements in blood circulation, increased sexual prowess, better sports performance, and all of the other benefits that you get from magnetic bracelets [wikipedia.org] .

Re:Inductive lanes? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41826203)

What health impact?

....says the idiot who gets cancer from excessive wireless signals 5 years from now.

You know what they say about discoveries...someone actually has to discover them.

Oh, and you know what they say about greedy corporations and the executives that represent them...no one can seem to tell the truth.

Re:Inductive lanes? (1)

hawguy (1600213) | about 2 years ago | (#41826525)

What health impact?

....says the idiot who gets cancer from excessive wireless signals 5 years from now.

You know what they say about discoveries...someone actually has to discover them.

Oh, and you know what they say about greedy corporations and the executives that represent them...no one can seem to tell the truth.

Cell phones have been around for decades, and used to put out much higher signal levels, yet people are not dropping dead from them.

The inductive chargers don't even use radio waves, they use magnetic fields, which you're exposed to every day from your home appliances and wiring.

Wait a sec... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41825331)

There's baby food which contains an image which gets visible when its surface becomes slippery? WTFBBQ.

Re:Wait a sec... (1)

AK Marc (707885) | about 2 years ago | (#41825697)

temperature to make sure you don't burn the baby

Re:Wait a sec... (1)

hawguy (1600213) | about 2 years ago | (#41825819)

There's baby food which contains an image which gets visible when its surface becomes slippery? WTFBBQ.

I think a better example is the beer bottle labels [packworld.com] that change color to tell you when the beer is at optimal drinking temperature. No need to actually touch the bottle to see if the beer is cold enough to drink.

Though I suppose with some beers, this label actually is useful to make sure the beer is ice cold before drinking to make it more palatable.

interactive lights that switch on as cars pass (1)

amanaplanacanalpanam (685672) | about 2 years ago | (#41825827)

I'd like some of that here, to reduce light pollution.

Prior art (1)

cbiltcliffe (186293) | about 2 years ago | (#41825889)

I hope they're not going to try to patent this.
Fukushima and Pripyat already have glow in the dark roads!

Thanks. I'll be here all week. Or at least until management kicks me out.....

disappointed (3, Insightful)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about 2 years ago | (#41825941)

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.

Re:disappointed (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41826519)

All those "godless socialist hell holes" are way ahead of us in science and technology.

We are just too divided within ourselves to realise this.

Testbed for new technology (1)

jrumney (197329) | about 2 years ago | (#41826209)

So someone invents an alien shape-shifting (OK I exaggerate, color-shifting) technology, and the first use we think of is to put it in babyfood?

About (1)

Whiteox (919863) | about 2 years ago | (#41826361)

time.

Markers under the snow - useless (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41826913)

Speaking as a Kanuck, if you can see the road, then you don't have snow yet. The only thing that helps is a good GPS receiver.

hmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41826929)

What happens when snow covers them?

In a related story. . . (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41826957)

In a related story, Wired apparently is still in business.

Shining roads in Amsterdam? (1)

OhANameWhatName (2688401) | about 2 years ago | (#41826963)

Trippy dude

Traitors (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41827015)

Don't all of you know that only in America can advanced products appear or be put into play. Just ask a republican. There is no global warming and there is nothing in Europe that we didn't have in America in 1910. And there are no pretty girls in France either. And they are dirt poor and live in filthy hovels and are all bankrupt due to socialism from things like trying to save lives with safer roads which is clearly an un American Marxist conspiracy.

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