• How to do safe audience scanning

  • How to do safe audience scanning       

2014 ILDA Award winner - Lightwave International

If you are doing audience scanning, it is vital to know how much light you are putting into the audience. The information below discusses how to do these measurements, and what the light levels should be.

The technique described on this page was developed by Greg Makhov of LSDI. It greatly simplifies making safety measurements. Instead of having to measure different parts of a show at different locations in the audience, all that is necessary is to measure a static (non-moving) beam. Then, based on the type of show - static, scanned or “10x” — the laser power is set to a known, safe level.

The photo at the top of this page shows a well-designed laser display. Tight, low-divergence beams are aimed above the audience, while wider, high-divergence beams go into the audience.

The audience beams usually have less power as well. This is not a disadvantage. As beams come closer to the audience, they appear brighter. So a lower-power beam aimed towards an audience can appear just as bright as a more powerful beam aimed above the audience.

Irradiance measurements to be required for ILDA Awards

Beginning with the 2017 ILDA Awards, all entries with human exposure must include contemporaneous measurements or calculations of the lasers’ irradiance at the point of closest human contact. “Contemporaneous” means that the measuring or calculating was done before the laser show started. This can help ensure that Awards entries are done at a known, safe and legal irradiance level.

For more information, visit our other ILDA websites:

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ILDAmember.com: Membership database and event management, including joining ILDA
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LasershowSafety.info: Information about safe laser shows, including laws, regulations, checklists, and more

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Photo credits: Top, 2015 ILDA Awards, photo by 3rd Dimension EvenTech. 2014 Award winners, photo by Patrick Murphy, ILDA