The Aerospace Lighting Institute held their annual Advanced Technology Seminar in Los Angeles, California, where Patriot Taxiway Industries’ Vice President Kevin McDermott, a leading expert in the LED lighting community, gave an informative lecture on directed energy and its current effects on the aerospace industry. The seminar featured government and industry experts in the lighting and Aviation fields who spoke about innovations on the technology front occurring and set to occur in the near future.
McDermott’s presentation provided insight into previous aviation troubles involving foreign and domestic directed energy usage, commonly known as lasers. This includes the over 1,800 incidents reported to the FAA of powerful hand held green lasers being used to “skytag” airliners on approach to major airports in the US and Europe. Discussion of the impact of directed energy and its current research is being conducted to manufacture cost-effective protective filtering for windows, helmet visors and sunglasses that offer substantial protection from directed energy lasers for commercial and military pilots.
“Directed Energy has significantly impacted aviation today,” said McDermott. “There are serious innovations to come in the aviation field concerning the protection from and usage of lasers and it will have a direct impact on the lighting industry.” While focusing largely on how to protect pilots from the issues lasers can have on safe flying, McDermott also discussed the future role direct energy will have on lighting environments of military aerospace. “Directed energy and its effects in the battle space is the present not the future. Most of the existing research and development of laser eye protection systems has been in protecting aircrews from our own or opposing forces aiming and tracking lasers. As vehicle-born and man-portable systems become more prevalent in the battle space designers that support the war fighter will have to adapt to protect the aircrew, the aircraft and the unmanned vehicles from these new threats.”
McDermott, who has served with the Wisconsin Air National Guard for 24 years, is VP of Patriot Taxiways Industry, Inc, a veteran-owned small business that provides design, manufacturing, and delivery of quality LED products. McDermott participated in the aerospace lighting industry’s renowned event with various business and university lighting professionals from across the United States. The seminar is designed to share updates regarding new technologies and to explore current issues affecting the industry.
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