|Small Orbital Beacon|
|Large Orbital Beacon|
Orbital Beacons are small spheres dotted with solar panels, containing a battery and a radio transmitter. The purpose of an orbital beacon is to provide in-system navigation. The signal they emit is a very simply encoded current time based upon an internal clock. This allows a navigator (or navigation program) to calculate a ships location and orbital path within a few minutes.
It is designed to emit a 1 second pulse every 10 seconds at the habitable orbit range of a star. The pulse length and interval vary if the beacon is placed either closer in or further out. The signal is usually transmitted on one or more standard navigation frequencies.