Acriglo Photoluminescent 3D Printed ADA Compliant Braille SignsDan
Since 2001, in the wake of the attacks of 9/11, Acrilex Inc has been manufacturing Acriglo photoluminescent acrylic sheet with the same long duration glow in the dark pigment that was used to paint the handrails and stair-nosings in the emergency egress areas and stairwells of the world trade center. That light provided the means of illumination to help thousands escape the towers before they collapsed. This untold success story of the egress systems in place at the time also served as the basis for a 2004 New York City law, known as Local Law 26 (Summary of Local Law 26).
Many sign manufacturers seeking to comply with this law and similar regulations around the country have been using Acriglo as the substrate material for their photoluminescent sign systems, and due to ADA requirements for interior signs and directional marking systems, these signs are also now being offered with Grade 2 English Braille.
As technology has progressed rapidly during this period, 3D printing has entered the arena for raised lettering and braille as well. Now the two innovative technologies of long duration glow in the dark pigment, (Strontium Oxide Aluminate photoluminescent crystals suspended in optically clear acrylic resin) and 3D printing have merged to produce Acriglo Photoluminescent 3D printed ADA compliant braille signs for glow in the dark signs and directional marking systems, as well as architectural sign elements.
While most emergency exit signs are very specific in their requirements (glow green in darkness),
Acriglo is also offered in a blue glow for non-emergency, non-egress zones that may be used to direct people away from interior areas with no exit, or to indicate rest-rooms, utility closets, fire extinguisher locations, defibrillator stations, directory boards, and room numbers.
Additionally, Acrilex Inc now offers custom 3D printing directly on Acriglo acrylic with any custom graphics and braille. All colors (CMYK) are printed in a single pass in high resolution to produce any full color image with as much or as little coverage of the surface as desired. Raised print & braille are produced by repeated passes of our print heads over just the areas requiring raised print. This process if much faster and far more cost effective than braille signs printed using traditional engraving or bead insert processes to produce braille signs in the past, while provided a fully finished custom decorative sign.
While it may seem somewhat counterintuitive for a glow in the dark sign to have braille, as unsighted individuals cannot observe the glowing light emitted in the first place. However, in this particular circumstance the glow in the dark provides sighted individuals with the same ability to navigate in darkness as the blind, who have a distinct advantage of navigating in darkness. In an emergency (or simply a power failure), it is the sighted individuals who have the disability, whereas the sightless individuals are already able to navigate the same terrain.
Acrilex Inc offers a full range of capabilities to produce dimensional lettering and full color imaging direct to substrate. To learn more, please read our blog on our new wide format 3D printing services.