Published Oct 20, 2016
John D. Bullough Nicholas P. Skinner


Highway signs provide important information to drivers to assist in navigation, to identify potentially hazardous roadway locations, and to remind drivers of safe operating practices. Ensuring that signs have sufficient visibility to the driving public is a key undertaking by transportation agencies. In order to assist in evaluating and comparing different materials for photometric and visual performance, the present study was undertaken to assess the utility of specifying sign sheeting performance in terms of visual performance. As part of this effort, a practical methodology for conducting field measurements of sign luminance along roadways was developed. In addition to describing the methods for an approach to visual performance based specifications, a spreadsheet tool for calculating minimum sign luminance and visibility from different sign sheeting materials was also developed.


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retroreflective signs, visual performance, sign legibility, sheeting materials

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