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Basics About FAA Obstruction Lights

By Marcia Marks


FAA obstruction lights come in many forms such as aircraft warning light and beacons. The lights are essential since they alert pilots of soaring structures, which occupy airspace to avoid crashing. The structures include cranes, bridges, towers, buildings, and antennas. FAA and ICAO are examples of groups whose duty is to set standards of obstruction lights.

FAA and ICAO offer help on installation and selection of all obstruction lighting accessories. They set standards that the accessories must comply with like NVGs and NVIS meaning Night Vision Imaging Systems. It is recommended that prior to buying accessories consumers should make sure that the lamps meet the present ICAO and FAA standards. Consumers are usually advised to ensure they buy original accessories and keep away from fakes.

Aircraft warning illumination make structures visible to pilots and are normally used at night though they still can be used in daytime. The illuminations are supposed to be of adequate brightness to be visible from far. The lights are normally in two colors white xenon and red. The white xenon and red lamps are either constantly lit or flash at regular intervals. The lights were initially used interchangeably but the new rules demand that red lamps be used at night.

Red light is easily seen by pilots unlike white xenon flashers. There are several modes of obstruction light such as medium intensity, low intensity, and high intensity lamps. Medium intensity white lamps are installed on every structure that is over 200 feet up to 500 feet. It is a must that if medium white lamps are used on structures over 500 feet then they must be painted.

High intensity white xenon flashers are installed on structures above 500 feet. They offer high visibility both at nighttime and day. High intensity flashers flash forty times per minute at different intensities. The intensity decreases as nightfall approaches. They flickering intensity at sunset is 20000 candelas and 270000 candelas at daytime. The intensity decreases to 2000 candelas during nighttime.

Development in lighting technology has resulted in invention of led obstruction light. The latest types are energy saving and are made to fit nearly everywhere around the world. The led lamps are a perfect substitute for incandescent lamps. They are free of maintenance, durable, and reliable. They are available in a wider scope, which consist of photocells, flashers, and relays so as to meet varied needs.

Beacons and warning illuminations have limitations. They form part of light pollution as well as killing birds. White flashers usually merge with domestic lighting systems in the neighborhood thus confusing pilots. The confusion they create plays a great role in airplane accidents at nighttime. White strobes are very expensive to maintain because they require frequent repainting that come at an additional cost.

FAA obstruction lights are very important part of safety observance, which owners of soaring structures have to follow to prevent accidents. The lamps are made by many companies. Each firm attempts to vary its products so as to make a distinction of themselves. It is not easy for buyers to select from the various brands when shopping for these products and that is when the internet becomes useful. All the necessary details are available over their blogs on the internet.




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Ditulis oleh: Faisal Reza Siregar - Friday, December 27, 2013

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