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Re: [TowerTalk] Lightning Advice/Ground Potentials

Subject: Re: [TowerTalk] Lightning Advice/Ground Potentials
From: (Phil Camera)
Date: Tue, 11 Sep 2007 20:32:08 +0000
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I'll attempt a more non-technical explanation for why you need all your grounds 
(Tower, SPG, Shack, Electrical, Arrestors) to be bonded together.

Say that you have all of the above bonded together except for the Electrical 
service entrance.  We get strike energy induced into our Tower/Antenna system.  
Most of the energy will be shunted to ground out at the tower, and then some 
more at the SPG (arrestors or just coax shields bonded to the SPG).  Some 
voltage rise will still occur in the system and will go onto the case of the 
equipment inside via the Shack ground.

Now the electrical service ground is not in this group and will/may have a 
lower potential (yes it will have some energy induced from the nearby strike 
but not the same as the Tower/SPG/Shack system) than the Tower/SPG/Shack system.

Now inside your equipment you have your case at a higher voltage than the 
electrical ground (which is connected to your mains box and in turn to your 
service entrance ground).  Back from Electricity 101, we know that when we have 
a voltage difference and there is a conductive path, we will have current flow. 
 This flow is normally through some component on your equipment's circuitry or 
circuit board and voila, zapped equipment.

OK, so now lets bond everything together, outdoors.  Now when we ge the induced 
energy, everybody (grounds) all rise and fall in that voltage together and 
there is no voltage difference inside of your equipment and voila, no current 
and no zapped electronics.

Quite simple if you think about it.
Phil - KB9CRY 
Lockport, IL

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