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Visual Signals - Marine AtoN Lights Calculator

The R&RNAV Visual Signalling section has developed a visual conspicuity model called the Marine AtoN Lights Calculator. The idea behind this application is to provide a useful tool and also a learning platform.

In the first instance it provides a calculator allowing for many different factors relevant to planning and designing a visual aid-to-navigation applied to the marine environment. It allows a scenario to be entered, explored and saved or printed for further analysis. The scenario may be for a new light or for the modification of an existing light. In either case the calculator provides an easy way to generate data for 'what if' analyses.

The other use of the application is as a learning tool: a tour around all of the factors involved and their interrelations demonstrates some of the difficulties faced when attempting to provide something ostensibly simple i.e. that a light can be seen at a given distance. The factors involve optics, geographical features, local knowledge and physiology.

The application is split into 4 'factor' sections - one for each physical part involved in making a light conspicuous to an observer and each of which having several attributes. The 5th section is how the results are interpreted in order to provide the required values.

The Marine AtoN Lights Calculator can be downloaded here