A new era for solar LED marine lanterns



Katie Bullied, Carmanah Technologies Corp. Victoria, Canada


When Carmanah pioneered the first self-contained solar LED marine lantern in 1996, it began a wave of solar solutions for marine applications. From coast guards, to navies, to port author ities to mar inas, Carmanah’s solar technology has proven its place in one of the most demanding environments on earth.

Building on this field-proven performance and timetested reliability, Carmanah is once again setting the standard and pushing solar into the next realm. With higher efficiency components and improved energy management, the company’s new M650 solar LED mar ine lantern offers reliability, performance and sophistication  delivered in a versatile and costeffective form-factor.

Enhanced performance, superior reliability

The M650 incorporates premium components, including highefficiency solar panels with bypass and blocking diodes; a bestin- class replaceable battery pack; and a high-powered LED (light emitting diode) into a UV resistant, polycarbonate/polysiloxane co-polymer body. The result is a self-contained, compact unit, weighing only 3.5 lb (1.58 kg).

This solar marvel is designed to operate reliably in temperatures ranging from -45 to 124ºF (-43 to 51ºC) and tested to withstand harsh environmental extremes  including humidity, immersion, vibration, hail, shock and solar radiation. Ideal for lighting ports, harbours and marinas; marking obstructions and nautical hazards; or illuminating aids to navigation buoys, the M650 delivers up to 44 candela IALA peak intensity and four nautical miles of visibility.

To ensure optimal performance in demanding environmental conditions, the M650 utilises a sophisticated energy management system (EMS). The EMS is the core technology inside every Carmanah solar LED product and functions as the ‘brain’ of the system by monitoring the surrounding environment and dynamically adjusting energy management to match prevailing solar conditions. The EMS not only increases efficiency, but also ultimately allows for more reliable performance and brighter
illumination levels.

Unrivalled sophistication and intelligence

For improved usability, the M650 offers a variety of configuration options including an on-board user interface, infrared remote and software programmability via USB connection. The software portion allows the user to configure the lanterns parameters, view detailed information and change transition settings while the sophisticated on-board user interface provides convenient access to configurable settings such as intensity levels, flash codes and battery health.

As an industry first, the M650 incorporates an intelligent deployment location feature, which safeguards the lantern against improper configuration – one of the most common causes of solar product failure. Based on the programmed installation latitude and longitude, and the desired flash code, the M650 restricts selection of
an intensity that consumes more energy than is available from the solar panel. As the user programs different flash codes, the M650 automatically adjusts itself to the maximum allowable effective intensity it can survive in the location it is being deployed.

Putting solar to work

Not only does the M650 use the clean, green energy of the sun to power operations, but it also incorporates recyclable batteries and is designed in strict accordance with the European Union’s guidelines for the Restriction of Hazardous Substances in electronic equipment (RoHS).

Whether illuminating aids to navigation buoys or marking hazards at ports and harbours, the M650 offers an eco-friendly, versatile and cost-effective solar solution. With super ior performance, unprecedented reliability, and un-matched sophistication, the new M650 is raising the bar for the future of solar LED marine lanterns.

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