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About Retro-Reflectivity... It's Enlightening!

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About Retro-Reflectivity It's Enlightening!
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The Flight Deck Is No Place A Dark Navy P-Jacket
gpod_stahlsref_jet.jpg
Launchperson Is Illuminated With 3M's SOLAS Scotchlite

RETRO-REFLECTIVITY
What does it mean ?  
 
Retroreflectivity is the proper term given to materials having the ability to return (retro) most of the light back to it’s originating light source. MANY ITEMS ARE REFLECTIVE; metal foil, a white T-shirt, even a darker colors.  BUT, the light reflecting off them (the light that's not absorbed by the color itself) is scattered in many directions, because they DO NOT POSSESS the ability to refocus the light hitting them back to the light source.
 
SO, WHILE THEY MAY BE REFLECTIVE THEY ARE NOT RETROREFLECTIVE.
 
The performance level of retroreflective materials is measured in candle power. Official data offers that white clothing has only a performance level of up to 0.3 candle power, a vehicle license plate has 50, and a conforming retro-reflective material has 500 candle power. There is of course a direct relationship between reflective index (candle power) and the distance from which it can be seen.
 
There are two main types of retro-reflective material: one achieves its retro-reflectivity by using a cube corner prism, the other the glass bead principal. In the former, light is reflected off the multiple faces of the prism, in the other it is reflected off the rear face of the bead.
 
 

TechnologyThere are two major types of retroreflective materials available on the market today - glass bead and microprism.


In a glass bead system (Diagram 1), light strikes the back surface of the bead and is returned to its source. TechnologyIn
contrast, light strikes each of the three surfaces of the Reflexite microprism (Diagram
2) in turn, before returning to its source. Because the microprism provides more reflective surface area than a glass bead, microprisms reflect up to 250 percent more light than glass beads.

TechnologyRetroreflective efficiency is enhanced by the precise arrangement of the microprisms, as seen in a microscopic view. Compare random size and placement of the glass beads (Diagram 3) with the precise uniformity of the Reflexite microprism array (Diagram 4). The microprism's economical use of surface area delivers the highest standard of reflection.

TechnologyWith more than a quarter century of research and development efforts behind us, Reflexite's technology is continuing to bring new standards of brightness, performance, and quality to the reflective products industry.

Above Graphic :Copyright, Reflexite Ltd.