ResQLink PLBs receive European approval

ACR Electronics’ ResQLink personal locator beacons (PLB) with Return Link Service (RLS) have received Cospas-Sarsat approval and are now available in Europe.

The Galileo Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) Return Link alerting technology will be available with the ACR Electronics’ ResQLink View RLS and the ResQLink 410 RLS.

The company says the ResQLink View RLS is the world’s first PLB with the capability to provide the user with a clear confirmation message via a digital display screen, verifying that the international satellite system Cospas-Sarsat has received their distress message and location. The ResQLink 410 RLS has a confirmation light to indicate that a signal has been received.

“ACR Electronics is proud to bring the Return Link Service technology to our customers with the new Cospas-Sarsat approved ResQLink 410 RLS and ResQLink View RLS,” says Mikele D’Arcangelo, vice president of global marketing and product management for ACR Electronics. “Offering two-way confirmation between 406 MHz beacon owners and search and rescue for the first time, the new technology can only be included in the latest distress beacons that are able to receive Galileo signals, so we are excited to offer one of the first RLS-equipped PLBs to boaters, hikers, pilots, hunters and all outdoor enthusiasts.

“Our PLBs are renowned for featuring award-winning design and functionality to help save more lives and aid the rescue services in locating and helping casualties. Now we can offer the latest innovation in life-saving technology to our beacon owners with a confirmation light, or even via a message on our ResQLink View RLS display screen, as reassurance that help is on the way – a significant boost for morale in a life-threatening emergency.”

Incorporating a multi-constellation receiver utilising both the Galileo GNSS as well as the GPS satellite network for faster location and improved accuracy, the ACR PLBs operate on the three Cospas-Sarsat satellite systems including the new Meosar, said to ensure they will offer the near instantaneous signal detection and transmission enabled by the global Meosar satellites and upgraded ground-station components. Using this network, anyone activating a ResQLink PLB can expect their beacon to be located within 100 metres (328 feet), 95 per cent of the time, within five minutes of the distress signal.

ACR says its new ResQLink beacons feature a protected activation button located away from the test button, multiple wearable mounting options including a belt clip and oral inflation clip, and an easier-to-release antenna enclosure. All the new design changes were suggested by members of the ACR Electronics SurvivorClub free beacon replacement program. The PLBs also include a new infra-red strobe light in addition to the ultra-bright strobe light to assist rescue crews using night vision goggles. With built-in buoyancy, the ResQLink PLBs have an operating life that exceeds 24 hours.

The ResQLink series does not require a subscription but is required to be registered with the country’s national authority.

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