by Sail-World Cruising
Don’t invest in your new Epirb before you check out the latest, available next month. ACR Electronics, Inc has introduced the world’s newest and smallest Personal Locator Beacon (PLB)—the ResQFix™, a one-button activated, emergency signaling device for recreational boaters, commercial mariners and fishermen.
The ResQFix™, which has just received FCC approvals, is 35% smaller and 25% lighter than its predecessor, the ACR AquaFix™, a PLB that aided in the rescue of a number of distressed mariners around the world over the course of the last two years.
The suggested MSRP for the ResQFix™ is US$750. Now FCC approved, the ResQFix™ will ship to retailers in February.
'In spite of developing a more technologically advanced Personal Locator Beacon that requires a more efficient use of power, features a more sensitive, built-in GPS receiver and employs components more typically found in the latest generation cell phones, we managed to keep the ResQFix™ at the same consumer price point as the AquaFix™ I/O, its predecessor,' said Chris Wahler, director of marketing for ACR.
Weighing in at just 10 oz (285 g), the ResQFix™ is easily carried in a pack or pocket and is small enough to be worn on deck by yachting racers, crew, solo cruisers and any other marine enthusiasts. A lanyard and clip provide functionality and allow for multiple mounting options. A Class I PLB, the ResQFix™ exceed RTCM waterproof requirements and comes with a permanent flotation pouch for buoyancy.
In an emergency, the ResQFix™ transmits on 406 MHz via the COSPAS-SARSAT satellite system with the sender’s unique registered, digitally coded distress signal. Emergency officials monitoring the system not only will be able to tell who is sending the signal (thanks to the coding and registration data) but precisely where the signal is coming from as a result of the onboard GPS engine. The beacon’s highly-sensitive, built-in -136 dBm GPS receiver provides for faster acquisition, a bonus in any rescue where every second counts.
Once activated by a single button, the ResQFix’s built-in 12-channel parallel GPS acquires then transmits LAT/LON, dramatically saving valuable time for the distress message to reach local rescue centers with exact coordinates to within 110 yards (100 meters). The ResQFix™ also simultaneously transmits a signal on the 121.5 MHz (SAR homing frequency) to assist rescuers home in once in the general area.
Additional unique ResQFix™ features include:
Full functional self-test of internal circuitry, battery voltage and power, 406 MHz transmission and GPS acquisition—an ACR exclusive.
The ResQFix™ is the smallest, 1.4 x 5.85 x 2.21 (35.5 x 149 x 56 cm),
Lightest, 10 oz (285 g), PLB in existence.
Typical operating life: 40 hrs at -4°F (-20°C) and 8 hrs at -40°F (-40°C).
Two Class II lithium battery packs. Batteries are non-hazmat making shipping safe, fast and easy.
Five-year replacement cycle (11-year storage).
Waterproof up to 16 ft (5 m) at one hour and 33 ft (10 m) at ten minutes.
A flat, stainless steel antenna wraps compactly around the unit for easy stowage, and is ready for rapid deployment.
ACR says that the combination of functional design, high quality raw materials and quality controlled manufacturing produce an emergency beacon that can be relied upon to perform consistently every time. The test facility at ACR claims to reproduce some of the harshest environmental conditions known to man, which assures that the ResQFix™ can stand up to rigors found in any environment on earth.
For more information about the new PLB and about ACR Electronics, go to their WEBSITE
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6:56 PM Fri 19 Jan 2007 GMT
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