> Anyone live within 800 to 1300 feet of these lines with experience to
> share regarding their effects on 160 through 6 meter operations?
I live 800 feet from a parallel feed of three 345KV lines. I'm a low-band
operator and for the past seven years at this QTH, the noise level from the
lines has varied from slight to deafening, depending on climatic conditions.
Others will tell you that corona does not produce RFI. I can tell you from
my experience that it does affect low-band operating and the sound can be
identified clearly over that of arcing hardware.
The most significant problem with these lines is not in localizing the noise
source. Rather, it's trying to convince the utility company that they need
to transfer power or shut down a primary feeder as a result of a RFI
complaint. Despite FCC intervention, nobody is going to jeopardize the
distribution of a major feeder due to a complaint from an amateur radio
operator. The risk of liability is much too great even if service is
briefly interrupted (e.g., hospitals (with or w/o generators) and people
with special medical needs). Generators and battery-backed devices are
becoming more commonplace, but they cannot be depended on -- and the utility
companies recognize this. And quite fankly, I don't blame them for taking
a stand. As an amateur radio operator, you assume the risk when you
knowingly agree to purchase a home in the proximity of these feeder systems.
In my own case, the utility company was willing to satisfy my concerns
during scheduled preventive-maintenance or system upgrade periods. It can
take as long as a year for them to try and accommodate you and you better
hope that the resolution is right the first time. Moreover, do not expect
them to comply with an order from Hollingsworth. The utilities will act on
a court order and not an impotent demand from the FCC.
If you're serious about low-band operating, I would urge you to stay clear
of any EHV transmission line by a distance of at least five miles when
possible. I would also suggest obtaining a copy of "The ARRL RFI Book," or
"AC Power Interference Handbook" by Marv Loftness, KB7KK. Marv's book
offers a sobering discussion on EHV lines.
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