Photoluminescent signs, often referred to as “glow-in-the-dark” signs, absorb and store energy from normal ambient light, then release this energy in the form of a visible glow when the lights go out. Photoluminescent products automatically recharge once the lights are turned on, requiring approximately 60 minutes of exposure to 5 foot-candles or 54 LUX of natural light‡, fluorescent, metal halide or mercury vapor light. [ ‡A 100W incandescent bulb produces about 1750 lumens or 137 foot-candles. A 23 watt fluorescent light produces about 1600 lumens or 125 foot-candles. ]
In the event of a power failure UL 924 listed photoluminescent exit signs are immediately visible from a distance of 50 to 75 feet. Current photoluminescent materials have a much longer and brighter glow compared to old materials, helping to speed evacuation during a lights-out emergency.
This failsafe technology works without electricity. Photoluminescent exit signs are completely power free, requiring no electricity (AC) or batter power to operate. Since no electrical connection is required, installation is very easy. Plus, with no power consumption, no electronics, no batteries to replace and no bulbs to burn out or break, these signs provide zero operational or maintenance costs over the lifetime of the product. Industrial-grade photoluminescent tapes and signs are designed to withstand normal wear and tear, making them a reliable solution that is “always ready” in an emergency.
A Proven Solution
Shortly after the tragic events of September 11th, the National Institute of Standards and Technology conducted an investigation into the evacuation process at the World Trade Center. According to the investigation, existing photoluminescent markings in the stairwells was one of the most commonly reported forms of aid in evacuating the buildings. As a result, the city of New York passed Local Law 26, requiring the installation of photoluminescent exit signs and floor level exit pathway markings in all commercial high rise buildings over 75 feet tall. Residential, hospital, hotel and educational buildings are installing photoluminescent exit signs and egress markings on a voluntary basis.
We recommend photoluminescent fixtures and markings as a reliable, energy efficient and cost effective solution to prepare for a lights-out emergency in your facility.