Global Research & Development

The Colas research network reflects the Group's global capability. With locations on five continents, our technical teams remain close to their customers, while benefiting from permanent contact with their peers in other subsidiaries as well as with the Campus for Science and Techniques (CST) near Paris.

Campus for Science and Techniques

Our 50 regional laboratories, with some 2,000 research experts, engineers and technicians are a driving force in the exchange of the Colas expertise and know-how amongst research experts, academics, industrial sites and our operational teams. They are involved on a daily basis in the design, application and monitoring of Colas products and techniques and in developing innovative new products and processes.

New products stem not only from studies and tests conducted by laboratories, but also from the numerous exchanges within the Group, among researchers, industrial sites and teams to develop worldwide. Innovations at Colas are rolled out globally and adapted to fit with specific local requirements, weather and traffic.

This one of a kind resource enables us to respond to our customers’ needs and anticipate the techniques of tomorrow.

Pioneering new techniques for surfacing

Our company dates back to 1922. Even then we were innovators, creating new and improved products for all our projects - we were pioneers of introducing a new bitumen based asphalt product, replacing the existing tar based road surfacing.

In the 1980’s we launched the innovative Fibredec proprietary system and we are continuing to develop and adapt this to suit our latest customer needs.

And for the ultimate in the future of road surfacing, Colas has developed Wattway, the first photovoltaic road surface in the world.

more about our specialist surfacing

The first photovoltaic road surface in the world


The fruit of 5 years of research jointly led by Colas and the INES, the French National Institute for Solar Energy, Wattway is a patented French innovation. By combining the techniques of road construction with those of photovoltaic production, Wattway supplies clean, renewable energy, under all types of vehicle traffic.

Learn more at: or download the brochure.

Download Wattway brochure

The futuristic traffic signal controller


Our new, ground-breaking M@estro traffic signal control is designed to improve vehicle flow, enhance control and offer futuristic capabilities. Developed by the Colas Group, M@estro is an intelligent controller that is fully tried and tested. Already in operation across the Continent and internationally, it meets current traffic control systems demands, is UK Topaz compliant, is capable for running sites on MOVA 8, UG405 and has UTC capabilities.

M@estro has inbuilt remote monitoring and can be connected directly to the Imtrac for fault management. This solution will be available in all M@estro controllers and will also be available as a stand-alone unit for existing sites across clients’ networks.

download its brochure

Streamlines traffic with light-emitting signalling


The Flowell solution, developed by Colas R&D in collaboration with CEA Tech, makes it possible to organise the shared space of roads and city streets thanks to a device based on the dynamic control of light-emitting signalling. Installed on existing roads, Flowell offers a great degree of flexibility and adapts the infrastructure to the needs of the community in real time. Flowell streamlines traffic on existing roadways by giving priority to certain users over specific time periods. For example, turn parking spaces reserved in the daytime for deliveries into car parking spaces at night, create temporary drop-off spaces around schools, and secure pedestrian crosswalks by enhancing their visibility and that of pedestrians with light-emitting markings. In the longer term with this innovation, a continuous line can become discontinuous and instantaneously redistribute the number of allocated lanes according to real-time traffic conditions.

The Flowell solution consists of panels bonded to the pavement that can bear all types of vehicle traffic with the same grip as conventional road surfacing. The panels, composed of LEDs encapsulated in a multilayer substrate, are connected to an electrical grid and controlled remotely.

download flowell brochure

Contact us to learn more

If you require further information about our products and services or would like to discuss your requirements, contact our innovation team on:

Tel. +44 (0) 1293 602 000 or email