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    Question GREEN laser pointer? Why is it GREEN?



    Why do laser pointers come in green, and why is that the normal color that's available for sale? Why not the standard red light that we astronomers like to use for everything?

    I've never actually seen a laser pointer, green, red, or otherwise. Is the beam of the green one visible or something, as opposed to other colors, where you would only see the dot when it landed on something?

    And as long as we're on the topic, does anyone have any laser pointer recommendations? Which one do you use? Do you like it?

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    Default Re: GREEN laser pointer? Why is it GREEN?

    I am pretty sure I have seen red pointers!

    In fact let me draw your attention to the following Wikipedia entry.

    http://www.google.co.za/url?sa=t&rct...PILWgYrv9-8hbg

    Cheers
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    Default Re: GREEN laser pointer? Why is it GREEN?

    Laser pointers come in red, green, blue, and a lesser common indigo.

    The human eye is most sensitive in the green region, around 532nm, which is why green is a popular color for astronomical pointer lasers, especially those used in outreach applications.

    Green also suffers less from scattering loss than does red.
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    Default Re: GREEN laser pointer? Why is it GREEN?

    I think red is the easiest to make ( helium-neon.) Picked up a couple cheapies on ebay, one was like $2.47 and one was a buck (key chain. ) Not sure if those are powerful enough for what you are using them for. Also I've heard not to point them at airplanes, not sure if this is true

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    Default Re: GREEN laser pointer? Why is it GREEN?

    “If you point a laser and interfere with the operation of an aircraft, that’s a felony. The crime carries a maximum of 20 years in federal prison and a quarter of a million dollars fine. In addition, the FAA can impose a civil penalty of up to $11,000 for each violation.”

    FBI — Making a Point About Lasers
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    Default Re: GREEN laser pointer? Why is it GREEN?

    Wow I guess that is true. Yikes.

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    Default Re: GREEN laser pointer? Why is it GREEN?

    I hope this message becomes clearly imprinted on the brains of all new laser owners! Not just in the US but world wide on this forum!
    Irresponsible use of any laser pointing device could cost lives and has dire consequences!

    Use your device/s safely and responsibly.

    Cheers

    Quote Originally Posted by AustinPSD View Post
    “If you point a laser and interfere with the operation of an aircraft, that’s a felony. The crime carries a maximum of 20 years in federal prison and a quarter of a million dollars fine. In addition, the FAA can impose a civil penalty of up to $11,000 for each violation.”

    FBI — Making a Point About Lasers
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    Default Re: GREEN laser pointer? Why is it GREEN?

    I don't own a laser pointer, but I do occasionally borrow one at outreach events. Whenever I do I have a ritual. I say "OK, I'm looking around for airplanes" as I scan 360 degrees for aircraft, then "OK, I don't see any airplanes so the object we're looking at is here" and I turn on the laser.

    The point of this is to keep myself aware, help the public be aware of the hazard, and maybe get my fellow club members to be careful as well.

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    Default Re: GREEN laser pointer? Why is it GREEN?

    Thanks for your words of caution Coyne. They do make nice devices to see where your scope is aimed quickly. However, if one lives in an area where there is regular air traffic I seriously recommend not to use them. I know many will do so anyway, and think what I say is being overly cautious. But it is so easy to accidentally light up a plane without realizing it, particularly the high altitude traffic. I have used them in locations where air traffic was far and few between, but where I live is along a heavily traveled corridor along the east coast and I will not use them. One can casually scan for aircraft, but it is quite easy to miss the high altitude ones. The beam also spreads out as it travels, thus it is easy to illuminate the cockpit, temporarily blinding the pilot. I don't think any of us want to do that. I believe John (Lowjiber) is a pilot, and will concur with my thoughts on this.


    So if you insist on using them, please do so with extreme caution and attention to your environment. Okay, the PSA is over, you may resume your normal activities.
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    Default Re: GREEN laser pointer? Why is it GREEN?

    The fact is that in almost every discussion re. use of lasers/laser pointers, something like the last sentence in this post comes up:

    Also I've heard not to point them at airplanes, not sure if this is true


    GREEN laser pointer? Why is it GREEN?

    I too am a private pilot. All of us who are pilots take this issue very, very seriously. The "long disclaimer" seems to be necessary, as there are still those who lack either (or both) awareness of the safety issue, or the legal implications.


    Quote Originally Posted by N8allen View Post
    I think it's safe to assume with a group like this, we all know the dangers and always keep it in mind when utilizing that tech. I just don't want to feel the need to include a long disclaimer each and every time we post anything involving a laser.
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