A finger light is a device used by many pilots in place of backlighting on critical avionics equipment under low ambient light conditions. There are numerous avionics in the cockpit of the HH-60 G Pavehawk helicopter that do not have any backlighting and therefore require an alternate source of light to illuminate the avionics at night. Outfitting the pilots with fingertip lighting is the most economical solution to this potentially dangerous problem. This essay describes the finger light and its five major components. The five major components of the finger light are the case, the light bulb, the on / off switch, the batteries, and the velcro strap.
The case is the component that houses all other components and is made of black molded plastic. The plastic is strong and lightweight to provide durability in harsh operating environments. The case measures two inches by one inch by one-half of an inch with an opening in the front for the light bulb. There are two openings on the each side for the on / off switch and velcro strap, as well as an access cover on the back of the case for the batteries.
The light bulb is a light emitting diode (LED) that provides a narrow beam of green light. The LED is round with a diameter of one-quarter of an inch and located on the front of the case. The LED is recessed in the case to narrow the beam of light which leaves only half the LED visible when installed. On the backside of the LED there are two copper wires that connect to on / off switch for power.
The on / off switch is located on the upper half of the case and is a two position slider switch that turns the light on and off. The user interface of the switch is made of black plastic and is approximately the same size as the LED. The off position is towards the rear of the case and the on position is towards the front of the case. Below the on / off switch is the black velcro strip which is routed through the case to secure the finger light to the pilot's finger.
The velcro is four inches long and one-half inch wide with the hook portion of the velcro on one side of the strap and the loop portion on the other side. The last of the major components of the finger light are the batteries which are housed in the back of the finger light case. The finger light uses two small watch batteries to provide power to the LED. The batteries are three volts each for a total of six volts of power.
The batteries are made of a shiny silver conductive material with the positive terminal on the bottom and the negative terminal on the top of the battery. The finger light is a clever and useful device used to compensate for poor ergonomics in the HH-60 G Pavehawk helicopter. The case, the LED, the on / off switch, the velcro strap, and the batteries are the major components, and each are equally important to the operation of the finger light. The finger light is an important innovation which allows for more effective operations under night time conditions.