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lasers unfocused at a distance

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i was wondering about how its such a big deal shining, pointing, or waving your laser pointer or labby at a plane, heli, or any aircraft. but just how annoying is a laser a few hundred feet away or w/e cruising altitude most planes are at. i mean Ive seen my 50mw green about a hundred feet away and of course it was about the size of a basketball but i never looked in it. could you really blind someone that far away? or do some deviants really focus for those distances? figured this might be fun to talk about. what do you think?
 

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It's not the damage they're afraid of at those distances. Even if it's beyond the damage threshhold it would still give you some aweful flash blindness, and that's not good when youre flying an airplane with a hundred people on board.

Here's a video. Kinda gives you an idea of what it looks like.
 
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Benm

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Ive seen my 50mw green about a hundred feet away and of course it was about the size of a basketball but i never looked in it. could you really blind someone that far away?
Depends on what you mean by blind: permanent damage is out of the question with 50 mW spot that size, even if someone stared into it intenionally for some time.

But the question is: how annoying/distracting is it? At nighttime in the city, a simple 50 mW green laser pointed at you from a mile away would likely be the brightest object visible. It might not be so bright as to prevent you from seeing anything else, but believe me, you will notice ;)

This is without additional optics. If you get a a good beam expander, you might produce a circle 10 cm in diameter 1 km away, which would still pose a serious eye hazard if using a very powerful laser.
 

Pontiacg5

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Laser + plane or heli = bad

Unless its a CO2 laser :D

Seriously though, at a distance the dot gets bigger. It would cover the while cockpit very easily, BUT moving the laser even a millimeter would move it hundreds of meters at a distance like that, it would be insanely hard to "lock on" to a cockpit from a long way away like that.

The pilots could look down and fly by instruments. I don't think a laser will ever take down a plane or heli, its just annoying. Besides, you shouldn't test something to see if it will break, in case it actually does!
 




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