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ArcticMyst Security by Avery

Pilot Looking for info

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I would be 1000 times more concerned with a drone strike.

Interestingly, I think this is the problem.

You have knowledge of lasers so can make a reliable risk assessment.
Drone pilots have knowledge of drones so can make a reliable risk assessment.

Pilots have neither so are getting over excited about both.

Personally I think both threats are wildly over exaggerated.

There are millions of drones in circulation and non have caused any problems yet.
I have had birds trash my aircraft on various occasions however.
 





Pman

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Birds have taken down aircraft though. An example actual flying piece of plastic, carbon fiber, metal and lithium battery device carrying a camera has mass and poses an actual physical danger to an engine for sure. I'll take getting hit in the back of the head momentary with a laser beam over a drone any day of the week;)

I agree. Both threats are wildly over exaggerated but in comparison the drone is much more of an actual threat. I have nothing against drones either. I would love to own a few of the better $1000 plus ones.
 
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While we certainly do not want anyone taking our opinions to mean its a good idea to lase aircraft--I MUST say there is a LOT of chicken little saying the sky is falling---

when you fall into a vat of choclate you yell FIRE!!! coz nobody comes if you yell CHOCOLATE!!-- there has been a huge increase of mororists call 911 and claiming that another roadragin' driver & claiming a gun was aimed at them when in fact they KNEW it was thier fone NOT A GUN_-

http://laserpointerforums.com/f51/lso-laser-safety-officer-tutorial-88136.html

see the above if you want TMI

Distraction however needs to be taken very seriously-when a pilot is 'chunking' he needs to follow all the steps needed w/o fail and distration can greatly interfer with that-- however I am in NO WAY saying that its OK to lase aircraft even at an altitude where the laser can hardly be seen amoung all the other lights on the ground-
I know of a method where a terrorist could do a lot of harm but I cannot put that out for just anyone too read...

at great distance a laser would be more like a oncoming driver who does not dim his bright lights---a PITA but not often does that cause an accident..btw a trucker tip==close one eye til the lights go past and you will retain most of your nightvision.
==

I am REALLY having a hard time figuring out WHY- the 'laserpolice' are not hanging about the runways for the VERY small amount of time that aircraft is active at night.
The FBI offers cash reward as well $10,000--for turning in anyone lasing aircraft.

Compare the stats between laser injuries and deaths at amusment parks >77 in ten years-- injury at a laser show will more likely come from a fall or falling gear-and not from the lasers-- the USA safety record is very commendable..

welcome to the forum OP
 
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Pman

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Toss the most popular high flying (expensive) drones into a jet engine and see what happens. We can speculate all we want but what is reality.
The chance of an actual drone going into an engine has got to be incredibly small for sure. What bugs me is then why is it so important in the Navy for men to walk the deck for FOD (foreign object debris) to pick up the tiny things.
In general what most people think of and what I've only seen shown in the media is large commercial planes. What about smaller ones like a cessna? Are the pieces/parts the same thickness as a commercial plane such as the window?
I agree that the chance of anything terrible happening is really low. Unfortunately we've been subjected to every little crash regardless of plane size and loss of life in this world of instant news. Honestly though I find it amazing how few overall plane incidents there really are in comparison to the number of flights. Air travel is a wondrous thing;)
 
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You are correct that we need to throw some into the engines just like we do with birds.
No manufacturer will be that keen of course since an engine cost more than £10miliion.

The reason militaries are more interested in FOD and do deck walks is that military low bypass engines are vastly more vulnerable to damage from small objects than civil high bypass engines, plus better at sucking it up. They are also working far nearer all limits. Military is all about ultimate limits, civil is all about reliability.
Wasn't always the case. My dad was a Navy Pilot before me and in his day eating a bird just gave you a nice roast chicken smell!

No Cessna windows are much thinner, but then they are flying much slower so the energy is less in a collision. The big worry to be honest is helicopters. They are far more likely to be in the low level environment, and the tail rotor is very vulnerable.
 
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I worked on a drill ship some 240 miles from land--we had to keep the heli-deck clean of ALL objects at ALL times--and were required to have our hardhats very secure with a 'strap' around your neck -- I never saw anything fly up and into the rotors but...hak
 
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Benm

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Why would any passenger get spooked by seeing a laser from the ground?

On all large aircraft the passenger windows are at a 90 degree angle from the flightdecks. This simply means that whe you see a laser from a cabin, the pilots probably cannot see it when looking in the direction the plane is flying.

As far as drones go: they could be a hazard, comparable to bird strike. The upside is that drones don't fly in flocks to the chances of ingesting a drone into more than one engine simultanously are neglible, unless it was a planned attack. Flocks of bird are dangerous because they can take out multiple engines when flown through, rendering a 2 or even 4 engine jet powerless.

The idea that a drone would cause more damage than a bird because it's constructed of harder materials is not really valid: In a modern jet engine the turbine blades spin so close to the housing that a minimal bend can cause blades to snap off and go into the engine. These blades themselves are made out of a very hard material (tungsten alloy mostly) so once one of them breaks on the intake end the engine will be destroyed regardless of initial cause.
 
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My brother is a commercial 737 pilot.
It happened to him twice, to get lasered during landing.

I asked him about the incidents and he confirmed that the biggest problema are two.

First is that the windshield turned mostly green, somehow impairing the ability to see the runway.
Second he reported that the most dangerous thing is actually that during the most critical part of the flight (he says that auto landing are quite rare) you are instinctively and preventively (pilots like to keep their eyes safe..) forced to look away from the instruments or close your eyes.
I would not define this just a distraction, rather a temporary impairment.

Both incidents lasted less than 10 seconds, but definitely where not just an instant..

Here a picture...http://m.mentalfloss.com/article.php?id=65424
 
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Benm

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Those helicopters will be fine lasered from below. They are actually military ones with decent armor on the bottom: you could probably fire handguns at them from the square and not do any fatal damage unless you managed to hit a rotor blade.

As for not using automated landing systems where they are available: As a pilot you want to fly the plane and especially land it since that is the least boring part of a flight. I understand that, but on the other hand it would probably be safer to use automated landing systems when available and only supervise them to correct if ever required.

Airplane and airport engineers have done an excellent job to allow aircraft to land in situations where a visible landing is not that viable (having weather rather than lasers in mind). This technology could potentially be improved further if it were used/tested more often, i.e. also under good visibility where you could spot problems with it.

Also, if at any time a passenger jet crashes due to laser distractions with massive casualties as a result, a safety board will inquire why a system that could have prevented it was not used. I'm not sure what way the blame would go, but it could be argued it was in part pilot error to choose not using that system even under clear conditions.


As far as the drone danger goes: I think the chances of a drone causing a large airliner to crash by accident are quite low. This changes when it is done on purpose, and someone flies multiple drones close to, and perhaps even into the engines off, passenger jets. On the other hand a low range surface to air missile is probably not -that- much more expensive than a swarm of drones, so i wonder if it ever comes to that.
 
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I would be 1000 times more concerned with a drone strike.

Even the odds of a drone strike are rather small. The odds of a bird strike are much greater. However, with the growing popularity of irresponsible multiblade drone users they are having a simiilar impact on the model aircraft hobby as idiots who fire lasers at planes are having on the laser hobby. Because of irresponsible drone users I now have to register with the FAA in order to continue to legally fly my single rotor model helicopters and airplanes. I also have to follow all issued TFR's , no fly zones, and if I fly within 5 miles of an airport I have to notify the control tower of my flight plans. . Like anything, when something gets too popular, easy to use and inexpensive it always attracts irresponsible rogue users who do foolish things and ruin the hobby for serious hobbyists.
 
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LSRFAQ

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Amazing how none of you are explaining the concepts of SZED, NOHD, CZED, to him. Nor are you discussing the FAA simulator studies... No one mentioned FAA 7400.D or CAP 736... SAE G10 ....


Sensitive Flight Exposure Zone...
Critical Flight Exposure Zone
Nominal Ocular Hazard Distance..

We finally have a pilot talking to us, So Tourist, you up for a factual discussion not based on emotive discourse? I actually have a safety certification involving lasers in airspace. In the past, some of my laser show work has been NOTAMed... And I build professional flight simulators. I sometimes do instrument work for a famous helicopter consultant, on evenings and weekends... I've also spent years doing laser shows... By day I work at a university.. with laboratory lasers and projected visual systems.... I know many of the folks who participate in advisory committees on lasers in airspace... I can thus open some bridges...

I tried to get this in at your place and got blown off... Seems Aviation people only want answers from Aviators.. Mr. Coyle can vouch for me...

Aviation regulators have left pilots in the "dark" literally on the technicalities in this subject..

"L@sers"

Kind Regards,

Steve
 
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Ricker

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Amazing how none of you are explaining the concepts of SZED, NOHD, CZED, to him. Nor are you discussing the FAA simulator studies... No one mentioned FAA 7400.D or CAP 736... SAE G10 ....

I published the chart of SZED, NOHD, and CZED data to him. Though the data is a few years old, it still shows that things are not as bad as they appear via the media and ignorant aviation workers.
Thank you for being here Steve, you're probably our (this hobbies) best hope to getting the TRUTH to the FAA and all aviation specialists out there, instead of misguided news stories scaring folks into thinking little Jimmy next door has a death-ray pointed at a civilian jet liner. :beer:
 

LSRFAQ

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Ricker,

The hobby's best hope is a guy who works for the laser industry who technically is supposed to speak against pointers.. However he has this good habit of telling the truth. I know him... He has spoken for leniency.. Its not me...

I am not your best hope, I'd slap an enforced Class IIIA limit on easy sales of completed pointers to the general public, and insist on operator training and licensing (even a on-line test, ham radio style) for everything else.

I'm not too worried about what you build at home. I'd prevent sales of certain easily completed kits, too. Said kits are the type where all a user does is install one snap in component or put a sticker on. My worry is the potential for pointer regulation spill-over into what I do on a daily basis with other applications of lasers. I'd certainly ban most imports that do not meet class IIIA in the US.

If you think this is radical, I'd just be reverting to the eighties and early nineties when existing regulations were actually enforced in the US. At home I have a nice letter from BRH, which predated CDRH. My Dad insisted, that I as a teen, back then, comply with any state or federal rules. So I called the government. After much debate, the director of a Federal Agency sent me a letter saying simply, have fun up to 4.95 mw. Over that, he wanted me to do the paperwork like every other user...

When an overwhelmed agency issued a blanket permit (just try to find that document these days, you won't !) allowing any business importing interest to make a visible pointer under 4.95 mW provided it had a CLASS IIIA label, that opened the floodgates for cheap diode pointers. Back then, no one could believe you could make such a device for under 5$.

If an individual is able enough to lathe a pointer body, press in a diode, and align optics, I'm not too worried about them. I'm all for the safe use of hobby lasers in your own home or on private property. Its when you take them out in public, with an unsuspecting public, that I get mad.

Or when you have individuals sell a non-compliant product such as a CNC laser "engraver/burner" device with none of the required safeguards or paperwork.

I've seen more then my share of retinal photos posted on this site (and others) showing eye damage from a hobby laser device, used improperly,
at close range. None of us who have seen such photos would endorse handing over Multi-watt lasers to immature, untrained, people. That is what this comes down to.

What irks us who are paid to work with this technology is the cavalier attitude that making a profit selling handhelds in any possible way, trumps all common sense.


With that said, why am I here? Some years ago some very highly paid laser professionals said, "Steve, if you can't ban them with the regulations, at least help them be safe...". Given that much of what is posted about laser safety on the web has glairing errors, I feel I have a moral duty to share a bit of what I know...

Thank God green pointers no longer have to have Q-Switching devices to make green light from infrared light. At one time they did... Were that still the case, and high peak power pulses were emitted, you would have seen a total ban by now. For a brief period of time, earlier in my life, Green Pointers were pulsed by necessity, due to poor conversion efficiency in the frequency doubling crystal. I bring that up only because I believe that some high power DPSS handhelds are self Q-Switching or Mode Locking and generating high peak powers that may explain some of the more recent injuries at high altitude. I've found a few scientific papers documenting very low power lasers malfunctioning by self pulsing. Its rare, but it can happen.

I've helped a few LPFers decide that a graduate level career in science was their path in life. That had a good outcome. I concede the need for expressive experimentation to learn about science.

Fair Enough? One rule in the airspace discussion, I refuse to tell potential terrorists how to make a better device. So you might see me omit a few things.
I'm not naïve enough to believe the genie can be put back into the bottle, so to speak. But I'm not going to issue a full design here, either...

Steve
 
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Razako

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A major issue I've seen is the ridiculous mislabeling of pointers sold on ebay. I've seen a bunch of accidents here recently where people have been hit in the eye by a cheap ebay laser their boyfriend was using as a cat toy(And other related incidents). In one case somebodies friend hit them in the eye with a 445nm and caused permanent damage.

Totally ignorant people buy these lasers from ebay which are all labeled as <5mw, <1mw etc. In reality these lasers can often by MASSIVELY overspec. I have a laser 301 which is labeled as <1mw(got it for all of $10). The beam is as bright as that of my novalasers X100 and it will burn through black CD cases. I bought a 3 pack containing a <5mw red/green/405 laser and all of them seem to be putting out at least 50+mw. I'm aware of the power required to do such things and I treat the laser with respect. Lots of people who don't know a damn thing about lasers are going on ebay, buying these mislabeled/overspec lasers and carelessly using them like those cheapo petstore pointers.

Things wouldn't be so bad if people at least had to put some thought into looking for high powered laser pointers. Right now you just have Joe Bob see somebody with a green laser pointer, find one within minutes on ebay, and then shine the 100+mw laser(Labeled as <1mw) in somebodies face as a prank.

Realistically it would take the cooperation of the Chinese to significantly restrict pointers entering the US. A ban on imports doesn't do much when Chinese companies just ship the laser with a customs form declaring it as a flashlight or telescope part. Customs workers don't have the manpower to open every entering parcel labeled as a flashlight and pop in batteries to see if it's a laser or a flashlight.
 
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