The Philippine Star

Barbalite lights up Phl highways

- – Rainier Allan Ronda

The award- winning Filipino invention Barbalite solar- powered illuminati­ng road marker now lights up highways and bridges in Luzon and the Visayas.

Retired Philippine National Police (PNP) general and award-winning inventor Percival Gammad Barba said that the increasing demand for his solar-powered road pavement light stud was raising the need for him to locally manufactur­e and assemble the studs.

“If we clinch a large volume order one of these days, then it would be great if we can manufactur­e our Barbalites here so we can do mass production and generate employment,” Barba told The STAR in an interview recently.

Barba said that the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) and local contractor­s have started adopting the Barbalite as a road safety device as a more visible lane marker that lights up a particular stretch of highway or bridge especially at nighttime.

He said that Barbalite-lighted highways could be seen in Santa Maria, Bulacan; Tuguegarao City in Cagayan Valley; and in Porac, Pampanga.

He said that contractor­s for a bridge constructi­on and improvemen­t in Pamplona, Ca- gayan and in Masbate had also ordered several pieces of his Barbalite.

“I’m very happy that they have seen the advantages and benefits of using our Barbalite, patronizin­g the invention of their homegrown inventors,” Barba said.

Barba said that he was following up his request for assistance from the Department of Science and Technology, through its Technology Applicatio­n Promotion Institute and the DOST's Small Enterprise Technology Upgrading Program, to help manufactur­e and assemble the studs.

While the light stud was fully designed by Barba, it was made abroad from materials mostly coming from Japan and Taiwan.

“My dream is to manufactur­e these locally,” Barba, who retired from police service last January upon reaching the age of 56, said. He was deputy director of the Directorat­e for Integrated Police Operations in Western Mindanao.

“Right now, we don’t have the capability to assemble here,” Barba said, citing lack of capital.

Barba won for the country a gold medal in the 2013 British Invention Show held in London with his Barbalite.

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