Sustainable road safety thanks to SWARCO innovations

Lane markings are a significant safety factor on traffic routes. The decisive elements in this case are the glass beads embedded in the marking material. They reflect the headlamp light and ensure reliable orientation. This global company ranks among the pioneers in this field and currently scores highly with the SWARCO SOLIDPLUS & SWARCO DURALUX premium glass beads. These belong to the new generation of premium glass beads with high reflection values and sustainable robustness durability.


Exceptional retroreflection and greater durability make premium glass beads the new standard in road markings.


The comparison on a pedestrian crossing in Switzerland. SWARCO SOLIDPLUS & SWARCO DURALUX beads are applied to the four stripes on the left, while standard beads are applied to the rest.
Picture: SWARCO Road Marking Systems

20th January 2020 – High-quality standard glass beads have been the state-of-the-art main constituent of road markings for decades now. They reflect the headlamp light and guide road users safely along the roads, especially in challenging weather conditions. Based on the assumption that the eyes generally deviate from the light beam of the headlamp, the glass beads feature a special angular dispersion to make them perfectly visible.



Innovations for the international market

The significance of this retroreflection for traffic safety is displayed by the sizableinvestments in research and development. Standard glass beads achieve reflectivity values of around 400 mcd/m²*lx. With its Road Marking Systems division, company SWARCO ranks among the leading companies in this segment. The new SWARCO SOLIDPLUS & SWARCO DURALUX premium glass beads achieve retroreflection values of over 1,000 mcd/m²*lx.



Successful field tests in Switzerland

Two field tests that were conducted in Switzerland under the supervision of local authorities confirmed the efficacy of the SWARCO product. Based onmeasurements taken on a highway, retroreflection values significantly higher than the necessary minimum reflection of 250 mcd/m²*lx were verified. The marking system supplied an initial retroreflection of up to 1010 mcd/m²*lx. Four years later, despite 36 million vehicles passing over, it still exhibited a value of up to 372 mcd/m²*lx (boundary lines) and 232 mcd/m²*lx (center line). This therefore confirmed a useful life of no less than four years. A field test on pedestrian crossings supplied similar results.




The field test on a Swiss pedestrian crossing underlined the durability of SWARCO SOLIDPLUS & SWARCO DURALUX beads compared to conventional, standard beads. Even after three winters, the reflectivity value still exceeded requirements.
Picture: SWARCO Road Marking Systems
SWARCO SOLIDPLUS & SWARCO DURALUX beads proved themselves in terms of durability in a field test on a Swiss highway. Approximately 1,600 usage days or four winters later, the road marking still exhibits remarkable values.
Picture: SWARCO Road Marking Systems

Ecological sustainability thanks to longer service life

SWARCO SOLIDPLUS & SWARCO DURALUX premium glass beads also demonstrate financial advantages. The higher initial unit price quickly pays for itself with a significantly longer useful life. The savings for the total useful life can be quantified at approximately 25 percent. Furthermore, service life is becoming increasingly important as a key factor in ecological assessments. The combination of increased road safety, cost-effective, long-term solutions, and greater environmental compatibility can therefore give SWARCO SOLIDPLUS & SWARCO DURALUX a decisively competitive advantage. The premium glass beads and underlying insights from research and development of the next generation of state-of-the-art glass bead technology are therefore particularly interesting for road operators.


Corporate Data

Quality products and services from SWARCO Road Marking Systems guide traffic safely from A to B by day and, above all, by night. On all types of road. Whatever the weather. From a single source. Over 5000 customers in more than 80 countries place their trust in them.