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Planes, Traffic Lights & Tyres : Find Out Why They Have “Standard” Colours



Ethiopian Airlines Plane Mistakenly Landed At Airport Under Construction - autojosh

ethiopian airline crash plane
If you have an inquisitive mind like I do, you might be wondering ; why most traffic lights have the colours red,yellow and green ; why most commercial passenger planes are painted white ; and why tyres are black.

These are not mere coincidences, and these colours were not chosen because they look “good”.
Let’s find out why these “standard” colours are used


Although very few planes(private and commercial) use other colours like black and blue, most planes make use of the colour white. There is a very reasonable explanation for this.
When planes fly in the sky, they are exposed to very large amounts of radiation and heat from the sun.White ( and other light colours) reflect heat and radiation, better than darker colours, but white is one of the colours that does this best.It helps airline companies save on cooling cost and also protects parts of the plane that can easily get damaged by heat or solar radiation.
You can experiment this phenomenon very simply at home on a sunny day, by trying on a white outfit, then a black outfit of similar material, trust me the difference would be very clear.You would feel cooler and sweat less in the white outfit.

Traffic Lights

From nursery school most of us have been taught that RED means stop, YELLOW means ready  and GREEN means go!. We have adapted to these colours denoting their various meanings, but they have not always being this way.
There was a time when traffic lights were initially just red(stop) and white(go), they were primarily used for trains.Train drivers often mistook nearby or surrounding white lights from other sources as the “go” signal.This prompted a change.

Red was chosen as the stop sign/colour, because it has a higher wavelength, which means it can travel farther.Yellow has a shorter wavelength compared to red, but a longer wavelength compared to green.


Very few people know this, but tyres have not always being black, they used to be white !. This is so because, the natural colour of rubber is white.
Because early tyres were very inefficient, they had a mileage of about 5000 miles, in the early 1900s scientist came up with a solution to add carbon black to tyres, this made them stronger and more durable, it also gave them the black colour.

Are you enlightened ?
Tell us what you think.

Don’t forget to rate and share.


Programmer | Web & App Developer | Digital Marketer & Social Media Strategist | Tech Enthusiast | Engineering Lover | Electric Vehicle Addict | Serial Entrepreneur



  1. Tinuke

    June 29, 2019 at 01:35

    Nice topic. Found this unique

  2. Tola

    June 29, 2019 at 01:41

    Nice topic

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