ANSI Information

ANSI/PLATO FL 1 - Flashlight Basic Performance Standard 

The Portable Lights American Trade Organization (PLATO) has published ANSI/PLATO FL 1-2016 Flashlight Basic Performance Standard. These standards help you compare flashlight performance, making it easier for you to make the best choice for your needs.

ANSI/PLATO FL 1 was the first flashlight standard worldwide, introducing definitions and testing methods for flashlight basic performance, as well as associated markings. It focuses on directional lighting, not lanterns or area lighting. The information is useful to consumers across a variety of industries and interests, including firefighters, paramedics, police, military, security, outdoor sports and activities, agriculture, and mining.

Developing ANSI/PLATO FL 1

Before ANSI/PLATO FL1 was developed, you couldn’t tell how a light would perform until you bought it and tried it for yourself. That was costly for consumers and frustrating for manufacturers like us, who work hard to make quality lighting tools.

That’s why Streamlight was instrumental in forming a coalition of industry leaders to create standardized tests and a uniform rating system. Developed with the guidance of the American National Standards Institute, PLATO, the National Electrical Manufacturers Association, and representatives from 14 companies in the portable lighting industry, these standards help you rate and compare the most important features of personal lighting tools.

ANSI/PLATO Standards

ANSI/PLATO FL 1 provides a uniform way of defining, measuring, and marking basic flashlight performance. The clearly defined test methods and marking rules help retailers and consumers gain a clearer understanding of the performance provided by a given product.

The following are the features covered by the ANSI/PLATO FL 1 Standards, along with the icon that represents that feature:

peakbeamintensityiconPeak Beam Intensity: The maximum luminous intensity typically along the central axis of a cone of light. This measures the brightest part of the beam. The value is reported in candela.
beamdistanceiconBeam Distance: The distance from the device at which the light beam is 0.25 lux. Results are reported in meters.
impactresistanceiconImpact Resistance: The degree to which a portable light resists damage when dropped on a solid surface. Dropped samples must not exhibit any cracks or breaks, and must remain fully functional in order to past the test.
ansiruntimeiconRun Time: The duration of time from the initial light output value (that’s 30 seconds after the light is turned on with fresh batteries) until the light output drops to 10% of the initial value.
lightoutputLight Output: A measurement of the total quantity of emitted overall light energy. The value is reported in lumens.

Water Resistance: There are three tests that measure water resistance:

  • Resistance to Temporary Immersion in Water
  • Resistance to Continuous Immersion in Water
  • Resistance to Splashing Water

It’s important to know that adherence to these standards and reporting results is strictly voluntary; and that each participating flashlight company conducts its own tests, adhering to very specific guidelines.

Streamlight includes the ANSI/PLATO F1 Standard icons on the product detail pages of our website, as well as on our packages.

Streamlight ANSI Resources