Frequently asked Questions and Answers :
1. What do you mean by Self Contained ?
Self Contained (SC) means a lantern that has its power supply incorporated into the lantern, with no external attachments or power supplies required for the lantern to operate.
2. Why aren't all lanterns Self Contained ?
Whilst the performance of SC lanterns is increasing all the time (the SC-160II is capable of up to 14 NMs) there is a still a requirement for the more powerful and long distance lanterns to have external power supplies. Sometimes called "Traditional" powered, these use external solar panels and batteries as required. These are still Solar powered, so therefore can be used in Remote locations, but they are not self contained. Sometimes these can be powered by AC as well if this power supply is available.
3. Why do you say " up to 4 NMs " or " 3-4 NMs" in your product information ?
All lanterns - regardless of manufacturer - are still bound by the same laws of physics. The actual performance of any Marine lantern will be determined by the following main factors : location, colour and flash character. For example, using our M650H with a Special Mark flash setting in White will deliver visible light over 4.2 NMs, but in Blue will only achieve visible light to 2.7 NMs, all other factors being the same.
So this is why it is important to confirm the actual performance of any lantern with the manufacturer before installing it. Most reputable manufacturers offer some type of program that will enable you to calculate the performance of the product that you are considering for SC lanterns at least. See Carmanah's Online Lantern Performance Calculator and lantern selector here
Note: For Non Self Contained lanterns, please contact us to confirm for you the performance and other data.
4. Why do you offer more than one lantern that offers the same performance range ?
Using the 3-4 NM range requirement above as an example, in the SC range Carmanah Marine has the following products : M650H, M660, SC110.2 and SC110.3. The M550 is also capable of up to 3 NMs as well, so this could also be included as an option. So if your requirement was for a " 3 Mile light " then as you can see there is lot of choice.
As a guide, the more features a SC lantern offers (GPS Syncing, Remote Monitoring etc) the bigger and heavier the lantern and the more it will cost. So if you require a Cardinal Mark with remote monitoring, then the SC110 would be the solution. If however you didn't need your Cardinal Mark to be remotely monitored, then a M650H or M660 would be the more economical and recommended solution. Having a range of solutions gives you the option to select the best lantern for your requirements, and only invest in the features that you actually use.
In other cases - such as where a lantern will be deployed on a small buoy or floating structure - weight is a consideration, so this again gives us a range of solutions.
This is why we, like most other manufacturers, have a range of lanterns that overlap in their nominal performance ranges. Whilst it can be a little confusing, ultimately this benefits you as the customer by giving you a range of options, but of course you need to be able to select the best solution and this is where the calculations as mentioned above are so important to select the most suitable product available for your particular requirements and application.
5. What is Autonomy ?
Autonomy refers to amount of reserve energy the lantern has given its settings and location.
Normally measured in days, this describes how long a lantern should operate for with minimal or no solar energy for re-charging the batteries through normal solar charging. Even in low sun or overcast conditions, there will still be some solar energy available to charge a lanterns batteries via the solar panels, but of course not as much as a full sun day.
It is important to ensure that there is enough autonomy to allow for "unusual " weather patterns., so if the calculations show a very small number of days autonomy, then alternative solutions should be considered. Whilst our lanterns do have protection processes to protect the batteries in the event of the batteries running below a certain level, it is better to have more rather than less autonomy days in reserve. The more critical the reliable operation of the lantern is, the higher the Autonomy days we would recommend.
6. Does a lantern that has built in GPS mean i can track and trace a lantern if it goes missing ?
GPS in the Marine Lantern industry refers to the Synchronized flashing of a number of different lanterns. So if you want to have 2 or more lanterns to flash at the same time (they must be using the same flash sequence) then you will need to have a GPS capable and equipped lantern.
So you cannot use this feature to find or track a GPS equipped lantern.
If you wanted to do this, then you will need to have a Remotely Monitored capable lantern. These use either GSM mobile phone or Satellite communication to provide information regarding the lantern equipped with this feature.
Carmanah Marine offers remote monitoring via our LightGuard Monitoring app solution. This uses the GSM on all Sabik branded products, with the Carmanah M860 series using Satellite based systems. For more information on this, please see here
7. What is the LightGuard Bluetooth App ?
LightGuard Bluetooth is an app that enables the control of Bluetooth enabled lanterns via any Bluetooth equipped iOS or Android device.
For security, the app requires a login to provide access to the lantern, but other than this security requirement, there are no other costs in relation to this app. The lantern can be controlled from up to 50 Mtrs away, and you can use this to program, turn off, confirm battery status, change settings or test the lantern as required. So for moving buoys or hard to access lanterns, this offers a perfect solution to the issue of checking a lanterns status without having to make close contact with the lantern.
This is currently available for a selected number of lanterns, but it will be extended to all new products as well as offered on certain existing lanterns in the future.
The LightGuard Bluetooth App is not a Remote Monitoring solution - for this application you require LightGuard Monitoring as per above
For more information on the LightGuard Bluetooth App, please see here http://www.sensorsystems.co.nz/resources/videos/