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Old 12-04-2015, 09:15 AM #17
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Default Re: Is the "Star Shower Laser Light" (As seen on TV) safe?)

Thank you for responding. I live in Anchorage, Alaska. These Star Shower laser lights are selling like hot cakes here too. Stevens International Airport is less than 10 miles away from most of the population of city of Anchorage, not counting outlying smaller towns that are part of the Municipality of Anchorage. In addition, Anchorage has a number of float plane lakes scattered around the city and numerous small landing strips in residential areas because some developers decided they could make more money selling houses if they included a private air strip. We have a subdivision with an airstrip less than a half mile away. They fly right past our house for landings and takeoffs. Mostly they are weekend warriors that barely know how to fly. I turned our laser lights off because the manufacturer sounds to me like they are misleading customers (you can't let any laser beams get into the sky within 10 nautical miles of an airport because of airplane safety but you can (and should) aim it directly at your house because it projects less than 100 yards." Just don't look at it intentionally. I don't see how both of these distance issues can be true. I wrote to the manufacturer and asked them to explain what I think is a discrepancy.


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Old 12-04-2015, 10:05 AM #18
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Default Re: Is the "Star Shower Laser Light" (As seen on TV) safe?)

LOL, I PM'd you asking where you were in Alaska but somehow you thought I did so in the thread itself. No problem, glad to have you on board. I'm located closer to Palmer.
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Old 12-05-2015, 01:30 AM #19
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Default Re: Is the "Star Shower Laser Light" (As seen on TV) safe?)

But what is the verdict on the safety of these laser units?

I'm quite sure they cannot cause any permanent eye damage to a pilot, they may be quite the distraction.

In most cases this would only be a problem at night, but considering the time of year and the northern position of alaska, i presume many flights actually are night flights, even if landig at 4 in the afternoon.
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Old 12-05-2015, 03:31 AM #20
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Default Re: Is the "Star Shower Laser Light" (As seen on TV) safe?)

Yes we have a lot of dark hours this time of year Your 4 PM was just about right on spot. On December 4 sunrise was at 9:51 AM; sunset at 3:47 PM, for a total of about 6 hours of daylight. We also have a lot of private planes. According to one source, Alaska has six times as many pilots per capita and 16 times as many aircraft per capita when compared to the rest of the United States. As I said earlier, a lot of these small planes land and take off on landing strips in residential subdivisions. The Star Shower laser lights brochure only makes reference to airports with a 10 nautical mile radius around the airport. Nothing is said about small planes flying around in residential areas.
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Old 12-05-2015, 03:47 AM #21
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Everyone keeps saying 40mw, but the back of the device clearly says "Less than 5mw"
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Old 12-05-2015, 04:19 AM #22
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Default Re: Is the "Star Shower Laser Light" (As seen on TV) safe?)

FAA Investigates Laser Holiday Light Display As Possible Hazard
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Old 12-05-2015, 06:34 PM #23
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Default Re: Is the "Star Shower Laser Light" (As seen on TV) safe?)

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Everyone keeps saying 40mw, but the back of the device clearly says "Less than 5mw"

They lie, it's due to regulatory power limits, if the power output was really 5mw and that power split up into hundreds of tiny points the display wouldn't be powerful enough, far too weak for anyone to want one, so they call the output low but make it high, just so there are no regulatory problems. i.e., if you list a pointer at over 5mw on ebay, they will take the listing down, if found.... so, sell all of your 50-100mw lasers as less than five milliwatt and your listing remains. In reality, this situation is very bad, now someone might buy one and think it is relatively safe when it can potentially blind you if enough care in their handling isn't taken. This is a good example of what happens when government tries to regulate something which is in demand. Stricter regulation would work, like banning the sale of all laser pointers but that is unreasonable and would just make a black market for them and criminals out of ordinary people.

I'm a pilot, so I have an amount of insight on this issue, my take on a pilot reporting the small output from one of these displays as a laser attack is because there is too much media attention as well as law. They want someone punished for pointing lasers at their aircraft, even if it doesn't really produce a hazard, as one of these certainly wouldn't to an aircraft at 13,000 feet altitude, it won't disrupt their night vision at all but yet they report them as "attacks". Also, I used to work for law enforcement, well, as a radio cop of sorts when I worked for the FCC. One thing I learned is that my coworkers would try to bust someone just because they liked the power of being able to do so and would work hard to find someone doing something they could write a ticket on. It actually made one of my coworkers jump for joy one day when he found someone doing something wrong on the air and could write them up for it. Give someone authority and they will use it, it's kind of a power corrupts thing we as a species do as we continue to give people authority over us, writing law after law for them to be able to use to punish others, feeling superior in the doing.
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Old 12-05-2015, 07:08 PM #24
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Default Re: Is the "Star Shower Laser Light" (As seen on TV) safe?)

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Originally Posted by Alaskan View Post
They lie, it's due to regulatory power limits, if the power output was really 5mw and that power split up into hundreds of tiny points the display wouldn't be powerful enough, far too weak for anyone to want one, so they call the output low but make it high, just so there are no regulatory problems. i.e., if you list a pointer at over 5mw on ebay, they will take the listing down, if found.... so, sell all of your 50-100mw lasers as less than five milliwatt and your listing remains. In reality, this situation is very bad, now someone might buy one and think it is relatively safe when it can potentially blind you if enough care in their handling isn't taken. This is a good example of what happens when government tries to regulate something which is in demand. Stricter regulation would work, like banning the sale of all laser pointers but that is unreasonable and would just make a black market for them and criminals out of ordinary people.

I'm a pilot, so I have an amount of insight on this issue, my take on a pilot reporting the small output from one of these displays as a laser attack is because there is too much media attention as well as law. They want someone punished for pointing lasers at their aircraft, even if it doesn't really produce a hazard, as one of these certainly wouldn't to an aircraft at 13,000 feet altitude, it won't disrupt their night vision at all but yet they report them as "attacks". Also, I used to work for law enforcement, well, as a radio cop of sorts when I worked for the FCC. One thing I learned is that my coworkers would try to bust someone just because they liked the power of being able to do so and would work hard to find someone doing something they could write a ticket on. It actually made one of my coworkers jump for joy one day when he found someone doing something wrong on the air and could write them up for it. Give someone authority and they will use it, it's kind of a power corrupts thing we as a species do as we continue to give people authority over us, writing law after law for them to be able to use to punish others, feeling superior in the doing.

Well said! Now we need someone that has an LPM to buy one of these things and see what they actually output.
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Old 12-05-2015, 08:50 PM #25
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Default Re: Is the "Star Shower Laser Light" (As seen on TV) safe?)

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Well said! Now we need someone that has an LPM to buy one of these things and see what they actually output.
Good idea! I can spread the word at my work if these indeed output unhealthy levels of radiation.

-Alex
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Old 12-05-2015, 10:52 PM #26
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Default Re: Is the "Star Shower Laser Light" (As seen on TV) safe?)

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Good idea! I can spread the word at my work if these indeed output unhealthy levels of radiation.

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If they do, just be sure not to say it like that.
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Old 12-05-2015, 11:03 PM #27
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Default Re: Is the "Star Shower Laser Light" (As seen on TV) safe?)

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If they do, just be sure not to say it like that.
Will not!

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Old 12-06-2015, 01:33 AM #28
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Default Re: Is the "Star Shower Laser Light" (As seen on TV) safe?)

One issue with these is that they bascically run a laser through a grating, and the 5 mW figure would apply to the brightest beam coming out of that. That would usually be the central beam, which you'd practically aim at your house.

Normally this is no problem at all, but if you happen to live at the foot of a runway it could be annoying to pilots landing there. Not dangerous in the sense of causing permanent eye damage.
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