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Bright Future for Hereford Entrepreneurs' Illuminating Invention

The GloTorch
The GloTorch
Originally published 5 June 2003

A bright future lies ahead for Hereford entrepreneurs who have developed a glow-in-the dark torch that you can find in the dark. Collaboration between DualGlo Ltd, a Hereford technology company and Innovation-Direct, a free consultancy service for SME companies delivered by the Universities of Warwick and Wolverhampton, has developed a unique, funky product that is now entering markets around the world.

After turning to the Innovation-Direct advice centre DualGlo Ltd, a small technology business, is now selling its products in China, New Zealand, the USA and throughout Europe. The partnership has led to the development of new products, new materials and processes that has enabled the company to develop an innovative generation of coloured luminous technology.

The idea behind the 'GloTorch' is that it glows in the dark, therefore making it easy to find when a torch is most required, such as power cuts and other emergencies. What makes it stand out, literally, from other torches is the special yellow plastic that can glow in the dark for more than eight hours, after just 10 minutes exposure to a light source.

The GloTorch is made from unique DualGlo plastic that naturally absorbs light (artificial or sunlight) and then glows brightly in the dark. The torch is useful when travelling, camping, or participating in out-door sports such as night fishing.

The new colours glow up to 7 times brighter than old style materials, and unlike previous technology, the luminous DualGlo materials are an ingredient added to the manufactured goods during production, so are part of the product, rather than a surface coating. The technology is currently being added to machine washable textiles that will be used in a wide variety of fashion, safety, sporting and military applications.

Stephen Lambert, Managing Director of DualGlo Ltd, said: “Input by Innovation-Direct has expanded the potential of our product - market and product advice led to the development of the 'Dual Glo' masterbatch that can be added to any type of plastics material and makes our products unique. The potential market for 'DualGlo' is now massive. Light switches that glow all night, signs that glow in the dark, scuba diving regulators and zips on outdoor and designer clothing are just some of the products that are currently being developed.”

Innovation-Direct is a free consultancy service for SME manufacturing companies. It is funded by the European Regional Development Fund to support qualifying companies (SMEs in West Midlands Objective 2 area) by providing, free of charge, five or more days of support and advice on the technological and market place challenges those companies face in developing new innovative products.

In the first two and a half years of its operation Innovation-Direct has helped over 240 West Midlands SMEs. It has funding to support another 375 companies over the next 3 years. The service can be contacted on 024 7657 3169.

For more information contact: Craig Baillie or Stephen Lambert, DualGlo Ltd, Tel: 01432 820999, Mob: 07989386689, email:

Ricky Singh, Warwick Manufacturing Group, University of Warwick, Tel: 024 7652 3057.

The original GloTorch is available at all B&Q stores, and the more advanced waterproof versions from specialist stores such as Field and Trek, Cotswold Outdoor or Maplin Electronics., or