Whelen Engineering is a leader in the emergency lighting and siren industry and has a history that goes back more than 60 years. George Whelen first associated the Whelen name with lighting when he created and introduced the world's first rotating, anti-collision aircraft beacon. The beacons quickly became known for their reliability and durability, which was all the more impressive when considering that the beacons were first made in Whelen's garage.
Whelen Engineering grew with time and exerted significant influence on the development of strobe technology in the 60s, lightbar development in the 70s, and the integration of LED lighting into the industry right after the turn of the millennium. No longer confined to a tiny garage, Whelen now concentrates its manufacturing and development efforts in two facilities, one in Connecticut and one in New Hampshire. It's not a small operation, with a staff that numbers more than 1,500 and sporting the largest design staff in the entire industry. It's no surprise, then, that Whelen manufactures, assembles, and tests all of its products at its facilities, so it is a truly made in America brand.
With dozens of products in its catalog, Whelen is one of the most prolific manufacturers servicing the law enforcement segment. It has certainly had enough time to iterate on and perfect its technologies.
Whelen's Police Lighting & Sirens Product Offerings
There are so many lighting and siren products in Whelen's listings that it's impossible to pick a single one out. With that in mind, here is a high-level look at what the brand offers:
1. Emergency and police lighting- Whelen's lighting comes in an impressive array of form factors, from single rotating beacons to flashers, from dash and deck lighting to full lightbars intended for installation on top of the vehicle. The overwhelming majority of Whelen lights are made with halogen or LED technology, the latter of which provides superior durability, longevity, and performance.
Many would consider Whelen's lightbars to be the pinnacle of its police lighting technology, and among them, the Liberty II stands out. It is a full lightbar that comes in several lengths, from 44-inch to 54-inch, and is available in seemingly any combination of red, white, blue, and amber. Whelen provides a number of upfitting options and sells hardware compatible with all of its lighting form factors, making for quick and painless installation.
Lightbars have to provide two things to be a quality product – optics and durability. These are Whelen's top design priorities, and it shows in the Liberty II. The Liberty II is manufactured using Whelen's Collimator optic design, which the company has perfected over many years of design research. It ensures maximum lighting output from all directions and guarantees maximum visibility. The Liberty II, and Whelen lightbar products in general, are made with an aluminum top that siphons heat away from the bar’s internal components. Center dividers, complete with liquid injection molded seals, provide robust resistance to water intrusion and protect the bar's interior from inclement weather. This water intrusion resistance is fortified by keeping the number of selling points to one or two, reducing the number of ingress points for water to pass through. Further, the Liberty II and Whelen's lightbars are designed with hard-coated lenses which repel most environmental damage due to dirt, salt, sun and road chemicals. Finally, Whelen's LED lighting technology is made with its Advanced Thermal Design technology, which reduces the stress on the LEDs even after extended longtime use.
That's all to say, the Liberty II and Whelen's lightbar products are the model of durability. It makes sense, then, why most of Whelen's lights come with a five-year warranty.
Whelen lighting products can also accommodate police motorcycles, in form factors that make for easy installation and maximum visibility.
Emergency and police sirens- Sound is an essential part of flagging down traffic, commanding attention or alerting people to a developing situation. And in addition to its deep pool of lighting products, Whelen also offers a huge number of siren systems. Some of its siren systems, including the 295SLS6 series, can be used hands-free, making for a mightily versatile option for police.
The 295SLS6 series, like most of Whelen’s siren products, are highly controllable. The 295SLS6 comes with a four-position programmable slide switch and six programmable switches for various outputs, including flashing or timed output. It is compatible with 100 or 200-watt speakers and is designed with 16 siren tone options. The user also has the ability to disable or enable the auxiliary remote siren using the power distribution switch. All of the 295SLS6’s configuration specs can be transferred to another siren system without the need for a computer, allowing departments to set up an entire fleet of vehicles in record time.
Although the 295SLS6 series is installed inside the vehicle, it is still made to rigorous durability and performance standards. First, it is manufactured to SAE J1849 standards, which specify acceptable acoustical performance levels. It is also built with over and under voltage protection, short circuit protection and input polarity protection, so the siren is guarded against various electrical and performance issues.
And again, the 295SLS6 series can be used hands-free, so the officer doesn’t have to take their attention away from their surroundings to operate the siren.
For more than 60 years, the Whelen name has been associated with cutting-edge engineering. Today, that cutting-edge approach is most apparent in its lauded police lighting and siren products.More Info⇩