Wind cones are not the most complicated airfield component, but you should not undervalue their importance. They tell wind speed and direction, helping pilots fly and land safely. So buying one for your airport is indeed essential. However, this begs the question: should you get a solar-powered wind cone or an ac-powered wind cone?

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Solar-Powered Wind Cone Vs. AC-Powered Wind Cone

Together, let’s explore which one is best and help you get the right wind cone for your airport by comparing and exploring two of our wind cone products, the Wind Cone L-806 vs. the Solar Powered Wind Cone L-806

Solar-Powered Wind Cone

The Hali-Brite solar power wind cone has several features that make it perfect for reading the velocity and direction of the wind. These include:

      • Easy to install: factory-installed wire and a short conduit run from Windcone to SPS.
      • For wind cones, this eliminates the need for costly subterranean trenching and wiring installations.
      • Custom-built for the installation site, with temperature extremes and worst-case insolation calculated over a 30-year period.
      • Uses an ETL-certified photocell to control the dusk-dawn wind cone lamp.
      • The power warranty is 12 years/90% and 25 years/80% when using a 100 or 200-watt solar panel.
      • Temperature adjustment is custom-programmed in the MPPT charge controller.
      • Battery, charging, and system status indicators are available.
      • AGM battery with a capacity of 100 to 300 amp-hours and a 4000 charge/discharge cycle.
      • Battery life is estimated to be ten days.
      • It has dual-post mounts with frangible connections to handle wind loads up to ASCE Exposure C.
      • -45 to +55 °C (-49 to +131 °F) is the temperature range.
      • For easy installation, it comes with a pre-assembled anchor.
      • Powder-coated steel and aluminum provide weather and corrosion resistance.
      • For the installation site, the solar panel is factory preset.

AC-Powered Wind Cone

Highlighted below are the key specifications of the AC Powered Wind Cones:

      • Externally lighted, internally lighted, or unlit options are available.
      • You can choose between halogen or LED lamps.
      •  All LED models have the following features:
        • Lamp life of 50,000 to 100,000 hours, essentially maintenance-free. Lamps have a four-year warranty
        • Improved lamp circuit reliability with multiple lamp circuits
        • Uses 80-90 percent less energy than halogen lamps
        • An LED obstruction light with a high life span
        • On series-circuit models, an integral power adaptor is included
      • On halogen-lit models, an incandescent L-810 obstruction light is included.
      • Wind cones in size 1 (18” x 8′ long) or size 2 (36” x 12′ long).
      • The pole is center-hinged, with a bottom of 4” diameter steel and a top of 3” diameter steel.
      • Single-person maintenance is possible thanks to a center-mounted braked winch.
      • The four anchor bolts are a welded one-piece assembly that is ready to be installed in the ground.
      • The aluminum basket is welded in one piece and comes with bearings already installed.
      • Rain caps shield the bearings from the elements.
      • The nylon sock has been treated to resist rot, mildew, and water.
      • The powder coat was painted in an international orange color.
      • It has a marine-treated option for longer service life in corrosive conditions.

Which One Should You Choose

Given the FAA’s strict specifications and requirements for airport products, both wind cone options are pretty reliable. In truth, they are almost the same in many ways. However, Hali-Brite’s Solar Powered Wind Cone L-806 has the edge. 

Highlighted below are the options and spare components offered by our solar-powered wind cone:

Component Description
Marine Treated “Marine Treated” (for corrosive situations, such as those within 100 miles of saltwater) Stainless steel bearings and hardware are used throughout, and the powder coat has been treated for maritime use.
L806-Hinged L806 Hinged Pole Option (Hinges in

center of pole) (L806 only)

L806-Pole Alum Aluminum Pole Option (L806 only)
L806-Roof Mount Roof Mount Kit Option (L806 only)
L806-Wall Mount Wall Mount Kit Option (L806 only)
1067-0002 Floor Flange Mount Option (L806 only)
1800-0025 Frangible Coupling (one included with

every L806) (L806 only)

7400-0000-1 FAA Size1 Wind Cone, 18″

diameter, 8′ length, Berry Compliant

Orange or Red/White

7400-0002 FAA Size2 Wind Sock, 36″

diameter, 12′ length, Berry Compliant

Orange or Red/White

Summing Things Up

Both of our wind cones meet FAA requirements, and their functions in airports make them incredibly useful. Without question, they are ideal solutions to help your pilots fly and land safely.

However, if you want more of a one-time investment, we have to recommend our solar-powered wind cone. Not only is it easy to install due to zero no underground wiring, but it also saves you money as it is purely solar-powered. 

If you need more assistance, please feel free to contact us. We are your go-to experts in airport lighting equipment and installation.