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[TowerTalk] Disconnecting cables and lightning (questions --

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Subject: [TowerTalk] Disconnecting cables and lightning (questions --
From: (Bill Coleman AA4LR)
Date: Thu, 4 Jun 1998 15:51:17 -0400
On 6/2/98 8:08 PM, Tom Rauch at wrote:

> From:          Bill Coleman AA4LR <>
>> Just don't disconnect them and leave them floating.
>> I'm convinced that the doublet wouldn't have been hit if it had been 
>> properly grounded and protected.
>Why are you so sure?

Well, I'm not a lightning expert, and all the talk about lightning 
reminds me of a yiddish proverb. But the theory I've heard and understand 
is as follows:

A grounded conductor aloft assumes the same potential as the ground it is 
connected to. It therefore becomes difficult for it to build up a charge 
and make it a potential target.

An ungrounded conductor aloft assumes whatever potential it wants. If it 
is bombarded with rain, it picks up the charge of the rain. Wind friction 
can also generate a sizable static charge. It may pick up enough of a 
charge to become a target.

Of course, lightning is dumb, and it doesn't understand theory - it 
strikes where and when it wants....

Bill Coleman, AA4LR, PP-ASEL        Mail:
Quote: "Not within a thousand years will man ever fly!"
            -- Wilbur Wright, 1901

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