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Old 01-12-2011, 06:53 AM #1
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Default Safety Questions regarding 445nm laser pointer

I had a couple of questions I wanted to clear up, any answers would be appreciated.

1. If I have a 445nm laser pointer thats close to 1W, is it safe looking at the beam if I am not reflecting it off anything (While I'm pointing it at the sky for example)

2. Is it safe if it reflects off objects over 10 yards away( Buildings, road signs..)?

3. I use the laser and have no goggles, and occasionaely shine it at certain things in the room thats not reflective.. I don't shine it on glass or things like that, maybe sometimes the wall, plastic, paper, etc. Is this okay?
For example, is it fine to stare at the laser pointer while I am melting rubber?

4. If it were to make eye contact with someone, how long would it take to cause damage?

5. The laser pointer is focusable. Does this mean I can focus it at any distances? For example, what if I am pointing it at something 300 yards away

6. After what distance does the laser pointer generally lose most of its power? Could you pop a balloon 200 yards away?

7. How legal is it to use this thing in public places?

Thanks for any help!


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Old 01-12-2011, 09:01 AM #2
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Default Re: Safety Questions regarding 445nm laser pointer

1. Yes, it's safe to look at the beam in the sky but do not look toward the aperture.

2. No, it's not safe to hit reflective objects at ten yards with a 1W laser, you can get hit with a direct reflection.

3. Some types of white paint are very reflective. You could damage your eyes shining it around a room like that.
....It is especially not safe to burn things up close (like rubber).

4. Direct eye contact with someone will cause permanent damage instantly.

5. You can focus the laser to infinity. The dot will just get larger over distance.

6. A 1W laser can pop a balloon 30 feet away if you do it right.

7. Assuming you live in the U.S., you will find that the "legality" will vary from place to place and the mood of the police officer.
....I would not just randomly shine one these around downtown if that's what your getting at.

Not long ago, a laser of this power would be bolted to a steel plate in a room with an emergency stop button on the door.
There's not a lot of room for error. I would encourage you to be extremely careful and discrete.

Please buy some goggles! o-like goggles

And keep asking questions. It might save your vision, or a friends.
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Old 01-12-2011, 09:15 AM #3
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Default Re: Safety Questions regarding 445nm laser pointer

Road signs are particularly nasty, they reflect right back in your face, from whatever angle you point at them.
Funny when done with 5mw greenies, but not so funny with 1W of laser light.
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Old 01-12-2011, 09:51 AM #4
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Default Re: Safety Questions regarding 445nm laser pointer

I gave some answers to your post over at Confusion and Questions on Lenses for 445nm before I saw this new thread.
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Old 01-12-2011, 10:03 AM #5
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Default Re: Safety Questions regarding 445nm laser pointer

Quote:
Originally Posted by anselm View Post
Road signs are particularly nasty, they reflect right back in your face, from whatever angle you point at them.
Funny when done with 5mw greenies, but not so funny with 1W of laser light.
Hadn't thought of that but yeah those are designed specifically to BE reflective. Might be a diffuse reflection but at 1W+ could still be pretty nasty.
+1 for that bro!
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Old 01-12-2011, 12:57 PM #6
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Default Re: Safety Questions regarding 445nm laser pointer

Quote:
Originally Posted by niktsk View Post
I had a couple of questions I wanted to clear up, any answers would be appreciated.

1. If I have a 445nm laser pointer thats close to 1W, is it safe looking at the beam if I am not reflecting it off anything (While I'm pointing it at the sky for example)

2. Is it safe if it reflects off objects over 10 yards away( Buildings, road signs..)?

3. I use the laser and have no goggles, and occasionaely shine it at certain things in the room thats not reflective.. I don't shine it on glass or things like that, maybe sometimes the wall, plastic, paper, etc. Is this okay?
For example, is it fine to stare at the laser pointer while I am melting rubber?

4. If it were to make eye contact with someone, how long would it take to cause damage?

5. The laser pointer is focusable. Does this mean I can focus it at any distances? For example, what if I am pointing it at something 300 yards away

6. After what distance does the laser pointer generally lose most of its power? Could you pop a balloon 200 yards away?

7. How legal is it to use this thing in public places?

Thanks for any help!
1. Yea but never look directly into the laser

2. No not safe

3. No and if you stare at the dot while melting rubber you will damage your eyes

4. Less than .25 seconds at a distance less than 200 meters

5. Depends on what the focusing optics are

6. the NOHD on the wicked is 149 meters so anything under or around that is still dangerous to the eyes.
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Old 01-12-2011, 01:09 PM #7
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Default Re: Safety Questions regarding 445nm laser pointer

Yes
No
No
A very very short period of time
If its focused at 200 yds it could.
If the police see it they probably will take it especially if your a teenager.

Keep in mind a 1000mw laser is 200 times more powerful than the FDA states is safe.
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Old 01-12-2011, 11:40 PM #8
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Default Re: Safety Questions regarding 445nm laser pointer

very informative thanks
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Old 01-13-2011, 12:04 AM #9
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Default Re: Safety Questions regarding 445nm laser pointer

Quote:
Originally Posted by AUTO XX View Post
Might be a diffuse reflection but at 1W+ could still be pretty nasty.
It's a bit more than that, they are actually retroreflectors (well most of the modern ones at least)
So they reflect, but it's not diffuse at all, those things try hard (and in fact succeed) to reflect back
directly to the source of light. It's quite the flash from a measily ebay greenie and even over a good distance!

So watch out for those road signs!

Of course, the 1Watt blue laser has terrible divergence, so it spreads out much faster to "safe" levels than a DPSS.
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Last edited by anselm; 01-13-2011 at 12:07 AM.
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Old 01-13-2011, 12:35 AM #10
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Default Re: Safety Questions regarding 445nm laser pointer

1) yes unless you get reported to the police-expect them to take it away forever
2) not always
3) No and get proper eyeware
4) Quicker than one can blink
5) No
6) No, you need to be much closer
7) Not really
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Old 01-13-2011, 01:59 AM #11
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Default Re: Safety Questions regarding 445nm laser pointer

This is helpful thanks guys.
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Old 01-13-2011, 10:55 PM #12
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Default Re: Safety Questions regarding 445nm laser pointer

Thanks for everyones replies, I have ordered the safety goggles and will be sure to use them.

I was wondering though, if I am burning some paper, is it okay for people to look indirectly at it? As in, a couple feet away from the dot?
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Old 01-14-2011, 08:47 AM #13
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Default Re: Safety Questions regarding 445nm laser pointer

I read that over 10 feet it shouldn't hurt you but I have tried it and it was far too bright for my liking.
On a black, non shiny (like magazine) piece of paper you should be ok at 10 feet but you are risking the eyes of your friends if I'm wrong.
Gotta say, it really isn't worth it.
Personally I protect my friends better than that.
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