If you’ve ever wanted to own a real lightsaber, your dream has come true. But safety officials have warned that the product is no toy and could cause serious injury or worse.
The Spyder III Pro Arctic is sold by Shanghai-based firm Wicked Lasers and costs US$197.97, shipping to 70 countries. It takes the direct blue laser diode used in extremely powerful home theater projectors and turns it into a 1W beam.
That might not sound much, but bear in mind that a standard laser pointer of the type used by idiots to piss off other crowd members at sports and entertainment events has the same power as sunlight on the skin. This device has 1,000 times that level of power.
The manufacturer admits that at close range the beam will cause “immediate and irreversible retinal damage” and could set fire to skin. But a laser safety expert told Britain’s Sky News that was, if anything, an understatement, noting that pointed in the wrong direction it could cause a deadly car or even plane crash.
The device comes with eye protectors and buyers must read and agree to a hazard acknowledgement form before purchasing one. But safety experts warn that the device is for responsible industrial use only and should not be sold openly to the public, particularly online.