Hotel Exit Signs: What Makes Self-Luminous the Better Option?

Hotel exit signs are as imperative as the little maps individuals see on the back their room door. Identifiers are used in public facilities to inform occupants of each exit location within the building. An emergency egress point is any door, fire escape, corridor, stairwell, or roof access location that leads to an area of safety in the event of a disaster. Each sign implemented within a structure must be permanently lit by either electrical or self-luminous means and easy to understand. International signing consists of a white pictogram with a green background while various regulations in the United States remain to use the word “EXIT” in red with a white background. Visibility of installed signs is often hindered by smoke or lighting complications. Incandescent methods must have a backup source to accommodate main power failures. The backup can either be an installed generator or of battery form. These methods still have the possibility of failure and hotels are turning to self-luminous means as a more reliable option.

Understanding the Drawbacks of Tritium Identifiers

Tritium signs were the first replacement option for averting the electrical problems associated with incandescent egress items. This form of radioluminescence entails placing a phosphor coating on the internal portion of a glass tube that causes a glowing effect as beta decay occurs. The radioactivity of these identifiers is a concern in any public environment because a busted tube poses a significant health risk to anyone in its vicinity. Tubes are capable of busting during regular maintenance or when heat from fire becomes intense. A variety of areas have banned this type of signing due to this danger. Additionally, Tritium signs entail the highest purchasing expense and a higher degree of maintenance. Disposal fees are highest for this egress identification choice since it contains radioactive materials. Phosphorescence choices have taken the forefront for implementing self-luminous identifiers throughout a building. These items absorb light from local surroundings and re-emit it at times when lighting has diminished.

Phosphorescence: A Simple Solution for Improved Egress Safety

The disadvantages of Tritium caused a new technology to surface based on the concept of phosphorescence. A film is placed over a substrate such as a sign to create the desired photoluminescent property. The phosphor used is harmless to both people and the environment.  Zinc sulfide was applied in the beginning; however, it did not provide the long lasting glow or brightness needed to lead people to safety in a large multi-story building. Films applied today include a new form of phosphor referred to as strontium aluminate. It provides a longer lasting effect and increased brightness as energy is re-emitted. Phosphorescent products take in energy from surrounding light sources and then release it as a green glow. Egress signs using these films are simple to install, dependable, do not require a vast amount of maintenance, and are safe for the environment. Hotels in need of an affordable egress compliant option can install photoluminescent identifiers without having to accommodate power requirements or worry about the dangers of radioactivity. Photoluminescent hotel exit signs have the additional benefits of recyclability, long life, and easy installation.

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