You could look at zero crossing detecting solid state relays or
alternatively add a series current limiting resistor which is shorted out by
a second relay after a fixed time interval. Maybe try a beefier relay and
see how much longer that will last.
----- Original Message -----
From: "Roger Parsons" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sent: Wednesday, 21 April, 2010 2:42 PM
Subject: [TowerTalk] Tower Lighting
>I have access to a 325' tower for my remote station, and like to assist the
>tower owner where possible.
> The tower lighting is controlled by a light sensistive switch working a
> relay which actually controls the lights. The relay controller appears to
> be home made and did have a large open frame relay in it - until the
> contacts completely disappeared! (The actual load from the lights is about
> 1200w on each of two phases.) I replaced the relay with a 30A contactor
> which I thought was overkill and it was fine for several years, but that
> is now getting unreliable. Clearly there is a pretty heavy switch on surge
> with incandescent lamps, but this must be true at all tower sites.
> What do the professionals do? (I suspect the answer to that is spend
> several thousand dollars with Cutler-Hammer.....)
> 73 Roger
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