New Handheld Laser Flare

Published 11 years ago, updated 4 years ago

As reported by

The improved version of the Odeo Flare, the Mkll Odeo Flare, will be launched at METS 2011.

The new version is equipped with a full hemisphere laser light output meaning enhanced visibility on land and at sea. It is a ‘much safer alternative to the conventional pyrotechnic hand-held distress flare’ says its makers Odeo Flare Ltd.

Available to the market in early 2012, it has been designed with consideration to SOLAS requirements but its new status means it is still in the application stages for Type Approval. Until this is granted coded and commercial vessels are still required to carry the pyrotechnic flare. However, once approved, it should be of significant value to yachts because of the advantages over traditional pyrotechnic flares.

One of these key advantages is its enhanced safety aspect due to its use of battery-powered lasers rather than explosives. It also has an increased life span, lasting for five hours when continually used and longer when turned on and off intermittently, whilst traditional flares normally burn for approximately 30 seconds before extinguishing.

Supplied with Lithium Iron Disulphate batteries, which have a shelf life of seven years, the flare will operate in temperatures between -40°C and +60°C. It can also be powered by ordinary AA batteries. The use of batteries in place of explosives enables users to transport the flares safely and they can also be carried in an aircraft hold.

The laser used in the Odeo Flare conforms to EN 60825-1 regulations and is Class 3R, meaning that it is not dangerous to a rescue helicopter pilot or the user’s vision should they briefly be exposed to the light. Completely watertight and designed to float, the flare can be easily and safely disposed of at the end of its life along with normal household waste and the batteries recycled.

Steve Groves, technical director of Odeo Flare Ltd commented, “The innovative MkII Odeo Flare will undoubtedly help to save lives with the increased light output now in a full hemisphere. This means that when used, it is clearly visible from the surface and air both on land and at sea. The MkII is designed to work with the challenges that go hand in hand with sailing and the flare is an essential piece of safety equipment to carry.”

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