OpenIDEO is an open innovation platform. Join our global community to solve big challenges for social good. Sign up, Login or Learn more

Heat Him UP "Green Hornet" Laser Ring. Faster Than He Can Blink

A standard laser pointer is limited to be under 5 milliwatts (mW) of light power. The damage threshold for the human eye is about 1 mW. So, since 5 > 1, a laser pointer can damage your vision. The reason laser pointers are not generally more powerful than 5 mW is because above 5 mW, the damage will occur faster than you can blink. So if you ever come across a laser pointer with more than 5 mW you could cause damage. If you were to take a laser for aCD/DVD/BluRay player the laser is more than 5 mW and can do the damage faster than you can blink.

Photo of Kenneth Walton
2 4

Written by

Burn Baby Burn
The Inspiration- This project builds on the IronWoman Project which uses a cool lighting solution to ward off a group of attackers.
The Technology- The goal of Heat Him Up is to aid in fending off a single attacker. Green lasers have been reported being very disorienting because a green laser can effect eyes, and can cause people to stumble and fall. A green laser’s light concentrated into a narrow beam if aimed at a person’s eye from close up, most or all of the light goes through the pupil. The already-concentrated light is further focused by the lens onto a sharp (“diffraction-limited”) dot on the retina.
Hooligans have  used green lasers from ground locations to impact airplane pilots in flight.
The power density from a 1 milliwatt laser, focused to a point, is brighter than the equivalent area of the sun’s surface.
The Trigger-The ring would be triggered by the heart rate increase of the wearer.
The Manufacturing- The rings could be built, sold by womwn in a "Piecework Network" and distributed by women through NGO's using the supply chain network of multinational companies will to support women.

Explain your idea in one sentence.

In the moment protection for a woman or girl under attack triggered by increase in heart rate

What is the need you are trying to solve?

Avoiding and Reacting to Danger in the Moment

Who will benefit from this idea and how would you monitor its success?

This would be a good solution for women in urban and other secluded locations that might be unsafe.

Who would be best equipped to implement this idea in the real world? You? Your organisation? Another organisation or entity?

I think the item could be designed in 3D and placed on Thingiverse for anyone to print.
The laser elements could be a part of a "Piecework Network" and distributed by NGO's using the supply chain network of multinational companies that do business in these regions.

Where should this idea be implemented?

Anyplace women and girls are in danger of attack.

How might you prototype this idea and test some of the assumptions behind it?

Create and print a 3D model of the ring , and use laser pointer components as prototype elements for the laser.


Join the conversation:

Photo of Fabian Wyss

Dear Kenneth Walton I would like to share some thoughts about your projectidea. To be honest, using a laserpointer for self defense is not something I could recommend. Even though some people do according to scientists experience desorientation from such devices, I doubt that with a beam of light you can incapacitate every agressor in an emergency immediately and what could easily happen is that the agressor would simply physically turn around the device and force it in the victims eyes and possibly cause irreversible damage to the victim's retina. Some years ago I was experimenting with handheld lasers for a design project and even though I was quite stupid to do so and I definitely would not do it again with today's knowledge, I tried out these days what it feels like to look into a green 5mw laserpointer from short distance and I did not collapse of desorientation at all even though according to specialists, I risked to damage my retina.
While a project like "Red Chilli Powder Filled Glass Bangle for Women's self-Defense" from Avi Solomon for example is in my oppinion potentially disturbing and thus limiting an aggressor more intensively than a beam of light, I see a higher chance to develop a ring or bracelet ar any other jewellery with chilli, pepper(spray), teargas or whatsoever while not potentially hurt or damage anyones body for the rest of his/her life. Just hope you are aware that there is not much space between distracting someones eyes and causing irreversable damage when using laserbeams as a self defense tool in a person to person fight situation.

Photo of Kenneth Walton

Thanks Fabian
I appreciate the comment, and I understand where you are coming from. I did do a little research and I do understand the potential issues related to the laser concept, both the possibility of failure in the field and unfortunate mistakes. I would never want to see any innocent persons eyes damaged with any kind of device.
But on the issue of protecting our women and girls from potential predators I have far less sympathy. The damage done to women everyday by men that don’t respect or value their lives, for me makes any solution to stop them palatable. I would like to add you to this virtual team, and would like to hear how we can make this concept better.