RetroTek-D transforms road marking surveys with innovative Retroreflectometer
Reflective Measurement Systems Ltd has launched the new RetroTek-D: the first full lane width RL assessment vehicle mounted retroreflectometer that can operate day or night that is certified to EN1436, ASTM E 1710 industry standards.
Conforming to 30 meter geometry, as a front-mounted mobile road marking retroreflectometer the RetroTek-D uses the latest machine vision and LED projector technology combined with powerful GPS tracking reporting software offering the potential to radically transform retroreflectivity road marking surveys for operators.
“The RetroTek-D is a game-changer for the road marking maintenance and survey industry on so many levels”, said Joe Turley, Chief Executive of Reflective Measurement Systems Ltd. The independent certification to EN1436, ASTM E1710 confirmed the accuracy of the measurement of the coefficient of retroreflected luminance (RL) of road markings at traffic speed irrespective of lighting conditions day or night. “The industry now has a system that can accurately survey the retroreflectivity of road lines (striping) to the left and right of the survey vehicle; road markings such as directional arrows, symbols and warnings on the road surface, and also the absence and presence of reflective pavement markers (RPMs/road studs). The system also records the day contrast ratio. Not only can our system provide the measurements, but our sophisticated and powerful QuickView-Pro Reporting software system can record the road asset, geographically tag its location, and provide video evidence of the condition at the same viewpoint of the readings, at 30- meter geometry. The days of closing roads for surveys or inefficiently surveying single lines with multiple journeys to survey a single carriageway are over. The potential savings on operator hours and fuel consumption is enormous, which is also good news for the environment.”
The RetroTek-D measurements were very closely aligned to a handheld retroreflectometer, with a mean absolute deviation of just 2.2% between both sets of measurements and no comparative values greater than +/- 7.5% as required by BASt, the German Federal Highway Research Institute.
This was particularly good as the samples were measured in a variety of different ambient brightness and also at different locations and when averaged over all samples, both the RetroTek-D & Delta LTL-XL hand-held retroreflectometer measuring systems provide nearly identical measured values: This indicates a very good conformity as described in a report by Dr. Hans-Hubert Meseberg, vice-chairman of the German association StrAus-Zert, a government-approved evaluator of equipment for use on German roads.
Dr Meseberg included in the certification that the performance of the RetroTek-D was not affected by the different vehicle velocity at which the measurements were taken, or by the differences in lighting conditions ranging from very bright sunlight, twilight to darkness.
The RetroTek-D Mobile Pavement Retroreflectometer is “deemed well suitable for dynamic measurement of the coefficient of retroreflected luminance RL of road markings according to … European Standard EN1436 and ASTM E 1710 and delivers the same results as a portable hand-held reflectometer [while being] independent of measuring speed [and] the kind or form of the road marking.”
Vehicle manufacturers are accelerating the adoption of Advanced Driver-Assistance Systems (ADAS) with over 70% of all new cars expected to be equipped with Lane Departure Warning systems by 2023. Similar to human drivers, the machine vision technology in these vehicle safety systems also rely on good quality visible road markings and signs day & night to operate safely.
Supported by the EU Commission in Europe & FHWA in the USA, this will inevitably increase the demands on road authorities and road survey companies across the world to ensure road markings are properly maintained. The innovation packed RetroTek-D mobile retroreflectometer could not have come at a better time for the road industry.