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26 Jan 2022

BTYSE: Limerick students attempt to add colour to the problem of black ice

BTYSE: Limerick students attempt to add colour to the problem of black ice

AT this time of year, especially on rural roads, black ice can be perilous for drivers.

But three students of Scoil Mhuire agus Íde in Newcastle West have come up with a colourful solution to tackling the problem.

Caoimhe Byrnes, Mai Flavin and Aoibhinn Ahern, who are in second year, are developing a road sign which will show, by a change in the shade, when the temperatures drop below freezing and there is a risk of ice.

They are hoping this will help alert drivers, cyclists, walkers and runners to dangerous travel conditions and ultimately help save lives.

Like many of the best ideas, their project for Young Scientist came from real life experience, as teacher Rebecca Phillips explains.

“They were at home so much during the lockdown, and what they found is when they were out on the roads walking, they came up against black ice. They started looking at chemical reactions, then they started looking at reactions which would go from one colour to another and back again. So the colour changes from yellow in the warm to red in the cold,” she explained.

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