Sign & Display

What is Photoluminescent Signage?

Photoluminescent signage, or you may know it as the glow in the dark stars, books and even clothes that used to mesmerise us as children. Little did we know how this magic had an even greater benefit – saving lives.

Whilst not stipulated in law, the use of photoluminescent material in safety signs is now often expected. Devastating incidents around the globe have highlighted how improved signage to illuminate exits routes, could have saved lives.

So how does the glow-in-the-dark bit work?

Photoluminescent safety door stickers when in daylight and darkness
Photoluminescent signs look like any other sign in daylight, and then glow, in darkens

Photoluminescent stores or charges itself from natural or artificial light. No electric needed!

When it turns dark, the energy in the sign is released (protons) and produces the green glow we all recognise. This is referred too as phosphorescence. The level of ‘glow’ is usually several hours and lasts over many recharges.

Here is a quick video from our production team showing the luminescence of signs they printed recently. The glow is after a minute or so under a light, imagine how bright this will be when charged over a day.

Is Photoluminescent signage, covered by legislation?

Used in Safety Way Guidance Systems (SWGS), Photoluminescence technology has been adopted in to safety signage regardless of no legal obligation to use it.

That isn’t to say SWGS, safety signs and fire safety signs are not covered by any standards, they are. The symbols on the signs must be compliant with BS EN 7010 and sign design must meet the requirements of BS ISO 3864 parts 1-4, to conform to BS ISO 16069.

Photoluminescent technology could help you spot, and read a safety sign in poor light or in a smoke-filled room, preserving life.

Photoluminescent Signs used on Fire Extinguishers

Can you use Photoluminescent technology in anything?

It is in a lot of applications already!

You may have seen pictures of waves  glowing in the dark as the crash on to the beach. This is bioluminescence, and is equally mesmerising.

For inspiration, check out these futuristic inventions with glow in the dark tech.


If you’d like to discuss safety signs, or using photoluminescent technology in your project, have a chat with one of our team today.


We print a lot of safety signs for customers like Councils, Universities and the MOD so you’re in safe hands!


Call us on  024 7667 3415 or drop us a line at [email protected]