Speed Reads

Look at this

Glow-in-the-dark paint made a Dutch road look like something from Tron

CNN / screenshot

For a half-kilometer stretch in the Netherlands, drivers are met with an eerie glow along the side of the road. It's not the work of aliens or a chemical spill: it's special paint that powers up in the day and emits a neon hue at night.

The markings are a collaboration between artist Daan Roosegaarde and the engineering firm Heijmans, which mixed photo-luminescent powder into its road paint to achieve the phosphorescent effect. In an interview with Wired, Roosegaarde declared that the end result was even better than he had imagined, saying "it's almost radioactive."

Roosegaarde told the BBC he hopes the paint can replace streetlights in some areas to conserve energy and save money. He ultimately wants to use the technology to add weather indicators to roads as well, such as painted snow flakes that light up when the temperature dips to a certain point.

For now, the paint is being tested only on that small strip, with a wider launch planned for later this month. Here's to hoping other places follow suit and someone finally realizes my childhood dream of making a real-life Rainbow Road.