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Systematic Degradation of Retroreflective Materials for Testing and Research
ISSN: 2641-9637, e-ISSN: 2641-9645
Published April 06, 2021 by SAE International in United States
Event: SAE WCX Digital Summit
Citation: Dinakar, S., Suway, J., Muttart, J., Edewaard, D. et al., "Systematic Degradation of Retroreflective Materials for Testing and Research," SAE Int. J. Adv. & Curr. Prac. in Mobility 3(6):3044-3051, 2021, https://doi.org/10.4271/2021-01-0853.
It is important for large trailers to be outlined with retroreflective tape to make them more conspicuous in roadway environments with diminished ambient lighting. Retroreflective material is also utilized on signs as well as clothing to improve their conspicuity. As used conspicuity tape does not perform at the same level as clean and new tape. Hence, there is a need for visibility testing of retroreflective materials with degraded or reduced effectiveness.
In an effort to control the coefficient of retroreflection (RA). A methodology that uniformly obscured parts of the retroreflective materials was developed. Validation testing of this procedure was conducted using glass bead sheeting, as well as microscopic prismatic sheeting. The results from the study showed that, by uniformly obscuring parts of the tape, RA is approximately a linear function of the area exposed to the viewer. Thus, the overall perceived brightness and coefficient of retroreflection readings were reduced. This process can be very useful in simulating degraded retroreflective tape for testing to control for performance (coefficient of retroreflection) levels.