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Old 08-15-2017, 03:54 AM #1
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Default Is simply shining a Class 3+ laser into the sky illegal?

I am curious on the legality of shining a very visible green Class 3+ laser into the sky...assuming it's not purposely directed at any aircraft, buildings, cars or people. I live in the SW USA.

Mainly, I'm curious how they are regarded as they're still pretty rare among the population in general. Also, how would LEO types deal with them?

PS: I guess my avatar is somewhat incriminating.



Last edited by edslittleworld; 08-15-2017 at 03:55 AM.
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Old 08-15-2017, 07:49 AM #2
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Default Re: Is simply shining a Class 3+ laser into the sky illegal?

This is the lasted news I could find on laser laws in Arizona, hope it helps.

Arizona | Laser Pointer Safety - Statistics, laws, and general laser pointer news.

A lot of states have a law that says you can't shine a laser beam in the sky 10 miles around a airport, you might want to see if Arizona has one like that also. Stay safe.
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Old 08-15-2017, 08:25 AM #3
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Default Re: Is simply shining a Class 3+ laser into the sky illegal?

As long as there aren't any aircraft or any living things you are purposely trying to harm/shine to, you are perfectly legal to use your laser in a proper setting(following state laws as mentioned by BobMc).

Regarding the population having Class IIIb lasers, I'd say it's actually the most common class of lasers out there. With the advent of cheap $5 eBay pointers, most of them doing 5mW+, it isn't a surprise to think they're all over the place

-Alex
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Old 08-15-2017, 11:28 AM #4
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Default Re: Is simply shining a Class 3+ laser into the sky illegal?

I believe the 10 miles away from an airport is Federal, not that states don't have their own regs.
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Old 08-15-2017, 11:47 AM #5
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Default Re: Is simply shining a Class 3+ laser into the sky illegal?

Quote:
Originally Posted by edslittleworld View Post
I am curious on the legality of shining a very visible green Class 3+ laser into the sky...assuming it's not purposely directed at any aircraft, buildings, cars or people. I live in the SW USA.

Mainly, I'm curious how they are regarded as they're still pretty rare among the population in general. Also, how would LEO types deal with them?

PS: I guess my avatar is somewhat incriminating.
What is that based on

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hap View Post
Regarding the population having Class IIIb lasers, I'd say it's actually the most common class of lasers out there. With the advent of cheap $5 eBay pointers, most of them doing 5mW+, it isn't a surprise to think they're all over the place

-Alex
^^^ Like he said ^^^

The safest and least dangerous area to shine a
very visible laser (520-532nm) outside is NOT into
the sky... It's just common sense.

Jerry
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Old 08-15-2017, 12:04 PM #6
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Default Re: Is simply shining a Class 3+ laser into the sky illegal?

Quote:
Originally Posted by edslittleworld View Post
I am curious on the legality of shining a very visible green Class 3+ laser into the sky...assuming it's not purposely directed at any aircraft, buildings, cars or people. I live in the SW USA.

Mainly, I'm curious how they are regarded as they're still pretty rare among the population in general. Also, how would LEO types deal with them?

PS: I guess my avatar is somewhat incriminating.
This is one of my favorite topics do to a plethora of misunderstanding for a very longtime.
There ain't no federal law preventing citizens Tom, Dick, or Mary from shining a laser of any class into the sky. This link to the FAA will answer the question throughly. http://www.laserpointersafety.com/ru...s-outdoor.html

Last edited by steve001; 08-15-2017 at 12:33 PM.
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Old 08-15-2017, 12:54 PM #7
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Default Re: Is simply shining a Class 3+ laser into the sky illegal?

Common sense dictates (to me at least) if someone
sees my Laser beam shining upwards into the sky
and decide to call the Police saying I'm shinning a
Laser at arrcraft it wouldn't be long before the
Police showed up.
I don't need the aggravation even if I'm innocent
and had the right to shine it into the sky where I
live...

Most people don't know the regulations but they
have heard the news of Aircraft being targeted by
Lasers. I tend to err on the side of caution.

Jerry
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Old 08-15-2017, 01:19 PM #8
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Default Re: Is simply shining a Class 3+ laser into the sky illegal?

Quote:
Originally Posted by lasersbee View Post
Common sense dictates (to me at least) if someone
sees my Laser beam shining upwards into the sky
and decide to call the Police saying I'm shinning a
Laser at arrcraft it wouldn't be long before the
Police showed up.
I don't need the aggravation even if I'm innocent
and had the right to shine it into the sky where I
live...

Most people don't know the regulations but they
have heard the news of Aircraft being targeted by
Lasers. I tend to err on the side of caution.

Jerry
You live in a different country.
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Old 08-15-2017, 01:22 PM #9
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Default Re: Is simply shining a Class 3+ laser into the sky illegal?

Quote:
Originally Posted by steve001 View Post
You live in a different country.
What.... ??
Are there no news media or neighbors in Canada....
Not all idiots and morons live in the USA....

Jerry
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Old 08-15-2017, 01:56 PM #10
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Default Re: Is simply shining a Class 3+ laser into the sky illegal?

What about another continent?
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Old 08-15-2017, 02:29 PM #11
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Default Re: Is simply shining a Class 3+ laser into the sky illegal?

Quote:
Originally Posted by lasersbee View Post
What.... ??
Are there no news media or neighbors in Canada....
Not all idiots and morons live in the USA....

Jerry
I was implying to that poster not to presume to know the laws of a different country.

I'm sure Canada has its own numbnuts too.
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Old 08-15-2017, 03:11 PM #12
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Default Re: Is simply shining a Class 3+ laser into the sky illegal?

Generally speaking, it's not illegal unless you're close to an airport or flight paths. Still be on the lookout for nosy neighbors or anybody who might 'freak out and call the cops'. Also remember that the 'side' visibility of your laser beam RAPIDLY diminishes with distance. With a 100mw laser people a block or two away probably cannot see the beam from the side anymore.
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Old 08-15-2017, 04:17 PM #13
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Default Re: Is simply shining a Class 3+ laser into the sky illegal?

This document pretty much covers it all.

FAA Form 7140-1 - Notice of Proposed Outdoor Laser Operation(s) and Configuration Worksheet



Quote:
b. Who should file a Notice?
Any person/proponent who plans to conduct laser
operations in the navigable airspace should file notice
with the FAA. Navigable airspace is airspace above
the minimum altitudes of flight prescribed by
regulations including airspace needed for the takeoff
and landing of aircraft (49 U.S.C. Section 40102). [URL="https://www.faa.gov/forms/index.cfm/go/document.information/documentID/186172"]
Not that any of us ever bother with the quoted section, unless performing commercial outdoor laser displays.
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Old 08-15-2017, 04:29 PM #14
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Default Re: Is simply shining a Class 3+ laser into the sky illegal?

is there like a website that you can look up flight paths around your area for that extra level of assurance because alot of the time planes like to disguise themselves as stars and its kinda frustrating having to sit and wait until they reveal their true forms as aircraft
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Old 08-15-2017, 04:44 PM #15
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Default Re: Is simply shining a Class 3+ laser into the sky illegal?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Merpie101 View Post
is there like a website that you can look up flight paths around your area for that extra level of assurance because alot of the time planes like to disguise themselves as stars and its kinda frustrating having to sit and wait until they reveal their true forms as aircraft
There are tons. Just Google "flight tracker" or something like that. Note that this only reliably works for ccommercial aircraft. Private and smaller aircraft might not be equipped with the tracking equipment, but they at least fly lower.

You can even build your own system to track planes using less than $50 in materials. Read about ADS-B and RTLSDR.

Edit: https://flightaware.com/live/
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Old 08-15-2017, 07:14 PM #16
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Default Re: Is simply shining a Class 3+ laser into the sky illegal?

This is a sort of point of contention for me too. First of all, there has never been a pilot or any individual on a flight that has been blinded or flash blinded or caused an aircraft to veer off course because of a laser strike anywhere in the world, ever. No one has ever been injured, either. I had a link to this awhile back, but would have to go looking for it now. It makes for great press and people like to use cameras to try to capture laser strikes in aircraft. The fact of the matter is that intentionally trying to hit an aircraft flying at cruising altitude is very difficult to do and accidental ones are rarer still.
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