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Laser Safety

While lasers are incredibly helpful and versatile, it is important that safety measures are considered. Laser safety covers safety of lasers in different industries such as health care, military, manufacturing, educational intitutions, outdoors and more.

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ANSI Z136.1-2014

American National Standard for Safe Use of Lasers

Z136.1 provides guidance for the safe use of lasers and laser systems by defining control measures for each of seven laser hazard classifications. A practical means for accomplishing this is to (1) classify lasers and laser systems according to their relative hazards and to (2) specify appropriate controls for each classification. Once a laser or laser system is properly classified, there should be no need to carry out tedious measurements or calculations to meet the provisions of this standard. However, technical information on measurements, calculations and biological effects is also provided within the standard and its appendixes.


IEC 60825-1 Ed. 3.0 b:2014

Safety of laser products - Part 1: Equipment classification and requirements

IEC 60825-1:2014 is applicable to safety of laser products emitting laser radiation in the wavelength range 180 nm to 1 mm. A laser product may consist of a single laser with or without a separate power supply or may incorporate one or more lasers in a complex optical, electrical, or mechanical system. Typically, laser products are used for demonstration of physical and optical phenomena, materials processing, data reading and storage, transmission and display of information, etc. Such systems have found use in industry, business, entertainment, research, education, medicine and consumer products. Laser products that are sold to other manufacturers for use as components of any system for subsequent sale are not subject to IEC 60825-1, since the final product will itself be subject to this standard. Laser products that are sold by or for manufacturers of end products for use as repair parts for the end products are also not subject to IEC 60825-1. However, if the laser system within the laser product is operable when removed from the end product, the requirements of this Part 1 apply to the removable laser system. The objectives of this part of IEC 60825 are:
 - to introduce a system of classification of lasers and laser products emitting radiation in the wavelength range 180 nm to 1 mm according to their degree of optical radiation hazard in order to aid hazard evaluation and to aid the determination of user control measures;
 - to establish requirements for the manufacturer to supply information so that proper precautions can be adopted;
 - to ensure, through labels and instructions, adequate warning to individuals of hazards associated with accessible radiation from laser products; and
 - to reduce the possibility of injury by minimizing unnecessary accessible radiation and to give improved control of the laser radiation hazards through protective features. This edition includes the following significant technical changes with respect to the previous edition:
 - a new class, Class 1C, was introduced;
 - the measurement condition 2 ("eye loupe" condition) was removed;
 - a classification of the emission of laser products below a certain radiance level that are intended to be used as replacement for conventional light sources can, as an option, be based on the IEC 62471 series;
 - and the accessible emission limits (AELs) for Class 1, 1M, 2, 2M and 3R of pulsed sources, particularly of pulsed extended sources, were updated to reflect the latest revision of the ICNIRP guidelines on exposure limits (accepted for publication in Health Physics Journal 2013, see also www.icnirp.org).



ANSI Z136.4-2021

Recommended Practice for Laser Safety Measurements for Classification and Hazard Evaluation

This Recommended Practice provides guidance for optical measurements associated with laser safety requirements. The information contained in this document is intended to assist users who are entrusted with the responsibility of conducting laser hazard evaluations to ensure that appropriate control measures are implemented. It contains clearly written definitions, examples, and other practical information for manufacturers, laser safety officers, technicians, and other trained laser users.





ANSI Z136.8-2021

Safe Use of Lasers in Research, Development, or Testing

One of the latest offerings in a range of vital resources for laser personnel. This standard includes policies and procedures to ensure laser safety in any area where research, development or testing is performed, including Universities, product development labs, private and government research labs (e.g., National Laboratories) and product testing settings. From this standard, LSOs will find useful guidance and recommendations for the safe use of lasers and laser systems that operate at wavelengths between 180 nm ultraviolet (UV) and 1 mm (1000 m) infrared (IR), used in research, development, or testing environments predominantly in an indoor setting. 2021 UPDATES TO THE STANDARD INCLUDE: New color figures; New Sample forms for: Room interlock checks; On-the-Job-Training; Barrier testing; Audits; Risk assessment; Expanded sections on: Robotics; Fiber optic use; Laser accidents; More detailed appendices on: High intensity lasers; Frequently asked program questions; Frequently asked technical questions; Regulatory overview; Laser Safety Officer (LSO) Duties and Responsibilities Table; Updated definitions. This standard is an invaluable resource for LSOs maintaining safety programs in research, development, or testing environments.



ANSI Z136.9-2013

American National Standard for Safe Use of Lasers in Manufacturing Environments

This standard provides recommendations for the safe use of lasers and laser systems that operate at wavelengths between 180 nm and 1 mm. Laser applications in the manufacturing environment include, but are not limited to, material processing, fabrication, laser alignment, leveling, inventory, metrology, and machine vision.


ANSI Z136.3-2018

Safe Use of Lasers in Health Care

This standard provides guidance for the safe use of lasers in health care. As defined herein, laser radiation refers to the ultraviolet, visible, and infrared regions of the electromagnetic spectrum. Laser radiation should not be confused with ionizing radiation or light from other sources.



SAE ARP 5293A-2020

Safety Considerations for Lasers Projected in the Navigable Airspace

This document applies to laser proponents involved with the use of laser systems outdoors. It may be used in conjunction with AS4970, ARP5535, and ARP5572 and the ANSI Z136 series of laser safety standards.



MIL-PRF-44366B

SPECTACLES, PROTECTIVE, LASER, BALLISTIC (BLPS)

This specification covers the requirements for protective spectacles which provide ballistic and laser eye protection for individuals requiring corrected vision.




ANSI Z136.6-2015

Safe Use of Lasers Outdoors

This standard provides guidance for the safe use of potentially hazardous lasers and laser systems (180 nm to 1 mm), in outdoor environments


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As the voice of the U.S. standards and conformity assessment system, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) empowers its members and constituents to strengthen the U.S. marketplace position in the global economy while helping to assure the safety and health of consumers and the protection of the environment.

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