THE BENEFITS OF THE RESCUE LASER FLARE ARE CLEARLY VISIBLE!

FAQ

H.R. 386 "Securing Aircraft Cockpits Against Lasers Act of 2011" passed the U.S. House of Representatives on February 28, 2011 and is moving on to the Senate for approval.? The bill specifically exempts "an individual using a laser emergency signaling devices to send an emergency distress signal."? Greatland Laser has sold it's patented Rescue Laser emergency signaling devices throughout the world for the past 10 years.? We have never had a safety issue with the products.? Rest assured that it continues to be legal to use your Rescue Laser to signal an aircraft in an emergency.? For an explanation as to why the Rescue Lasers are safe when a standard laser pointer can cause problems, please see below or refer to "How Do They Work".?

Product Specs
Who Needs One?
     
     
     

  1. What's the difference between the 3 Rescue Lasers?
  2. Why are they better than traditional pyrotechnic flares?
  3. How do Rescue Laser products work?
  4. Wouldn't my laser pointer do the same thing?
  5. Are they safe to look at?
  6. Won't they stun the pilot/captain whose attention I'm trying to get?
  7. When I shine my Rescue laser in the distance, I can't see anything. Why?
  8. I'm holding my laser in the air and my friend can't see me. Why?
  9. Does it matter which way the laser line is pointed? If so, how will I be able to tell?

1. What's the difference between the 3 Rescue Lasers?

While all three products have the same signaling capacity, they do vary in signaling time, design and distance. You can signal further using the Green Laser Flare® but the green laser diode is more fragile, uses more energy to operate and has a smaller temperature range.

For a complete comparison please see below:

 
Rescue Laser Light
Green Rescue Laser Flare?
Batteries
CR123 Lithium
CR123 Lithium
Operating Time on Batteries
40 hours
5 hours
Waterproof Depth
80 ft (24 m)
80 ft (24 m)
Operates Below 0กใ F?
Yes
No
Laser Diode
Red
10,000 hr. meantime to failure
Green
5,000 hr. meantime to failure
Signal Distance
20 miles at night
1-3 miles daytime
30 miles at night
3-5 miles daytime
Warranty
Limited Lifetime Warranty
180-day Warranty

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2. Why are they better than traditional pyrotechnic flares?

Rescue Lasers Pyrotechnic Flares
Signal Duration
5-72 hrs. depending on product
1 minute
Detection Capability
Locates reflective material
None
Fire Risk
No risk
Flammable
Environmental Risk
Environmentally safe
Hazardous Material
Visibility
Long duration - Easy to locate source
Short duration - Difficult to locate source
Resuable?
Yes
No

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3. How do Rescue Laser products work?

See our details illustrations on the How Do They Work? page.

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4. Wouldn't my laser pointer do the same thing?

No. In order to signal at a distance with a laser pointer, you would have to accurately hit your target in the eye in order for them to see you. Our products draw a line which fans out the further it goes. At 16 miles, you have a 6,000 ft. long fan of light with which to hit your target. Please see How Our Products Work

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5. Are they safe to look at?

Yes. Our lasers are classified by the The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as a Class IIIA(Class IIIR) Laser Product. Just like any other light, however, it isn't advisable to point it directly in the eye at short range for an extended period of time.  Please refer to the FDA's Consumer Health information publication http://www.fda.gov/downloads/ForConsumers/ConsumerUpdates/UCM167564.pdf explaining the different types of laser devices and laser safety. Rescue Laser can safely be used to signal an aircraft for help when you are in distress.  Unlike higher powered lasers that may be dangerous if pointed at an aircraft, Rescue Lasers will not cause eye injury nor flash blindness when used to signal a pilot in an aircraft.  Rescue Lasers have been on the market since 2001 and have never caused an injury!

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6. Won't they stun the pilot/captain whose attention I'm trying to get?

No. When the fan of light crosses your target's vision it will appear as a brilliant flash in the distance and will in no way impair their night vision.

Comparison of cockpit illumination power densities of Rescue Laser Flare®
emergency signaling device vs. typical laser pointer

Let’s compare the amount of laser light power which illuminates an aircraft cockpit from the Rescue Laser to that of a typical laser pointer, at a common signaling distance of 1.5 miles. The laser power level illuminating the cockpit and hitting the pilot’s eye from the Rescue Laser is about one trillionth of a watt. This power level is very low because the Rescue Laser begins with a very small amount of laser light and then creates a very long 2 dimensional fan (line) of light further reducing the power density of the light. This level can be easily detected, but will not obscure pilot vision in any way.

However, because the light from the laser pointer remains in a relatively small one-dimensional pencil thin beam, the laser beam spot size at the aircraft is about 240CM (8 ft) in diameter. Because all of this light is concentrated in a relatively small spot, rather than spread out in a long line like the Rescue Laser, the power density impinging on the pilot’s eye is about 1,000 times greater from the laser pointer, at this distance.

Therefore, although the signaling capability of the Rescue Laser emergency rescue and signaling device remains effective for signaling SAR aircraft, the power levels (brightness) of the Rescue Laser is reduced by one thousand times, this is a level where visual flight acuity is not affected.

It should be noted that even the laser pointer’s output although bright, is still about ten thousand times lower than the power level where eye injury can occur, at this distance.

Supporting Analysis:

Rescue Laser Flare ®
7mW
5 degree fan angle (87 mrad)
1mrad narrow axis divergence angle
1.5 miles = 2,414 meters
Area of laser line at 2,414 meters = 5.07 Million cm2
Watts/cm2 = .007 / 5,070,000 cm2 = 1.30 x 10-9 W/cm2 = 0.0000000014 W/cm2

Typical Laser Pointer
5mW
1mrad divergence angle
1.5 miles = 2,414 meters
Area of spot at 2,414 meters = 45,745 cm2
Watts/cm2 = .005 / 45,745 cm2 = 1.1 x 10-7 W/cm2 = 0.0000001 W/cm2

The laser light power density from the laser pointer is 1,000 times higher than that from the Laser Flare, when both measured at 1.5 miles

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7. When I shine my Rescue laser in the distance, I can't see anything. Why?

Lasers are directional lights. Unless the fan of light produced by our products crosses your line of vision or you pass over a retro-reflective material, you will not see the light when aiming at a distance.

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8. I'm holding my laser in the air and my friend can't see me. Why?

If you were to just hold the laser without aiming while slowly moving it back and forth you will probably not be visible to your target. Because lasers are directional lights, the fan of light must cross their line of vision. This is accomplished by first aiming at your target and then moving the laser slowly back and forth. Every time the fan of light crosses their vision they will see a brilliant red flash.

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9. Does it matter which way the laser line is pointed? If so, how will I be able to tell?

Yes, it does matter. The 6000 ft. high fan of light produced at 16 miles gives to the greatest signaling area. The laser line should be pointed vertically at your target. In order to tell which way the line is directed, point the laser a few feet in front of you on the ground.

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