[time-nuts] Lightning strikes vs GPS antennas

Michael Conlen michael.conlen at ncf.edu
Sun Jul 4 13:14:31 EDT 2010


I'm in Lutz, which can't be too far from you judging by the map.

The solution I'm going with is a lightning arrestor from Tessco. It's
essentially a N-type connector on each end with a piece in the middle which
will dump any spikes to a ground cable. I'll screw the ground cable to the
metal pole that I'll mount the antenna on and drive it in to the ground. It
doesn't isolate the antenna from the receiver as such, but it should provide
the protection you're looking for; that is, if the antenna gets hit then
it's just the antenna that goes.


On Sun, Jul 4, 2010 at 11:31 AM, Michael Baker <mpb45 at clanbaker.org> wrote:

> Time-Nutters--
> The 5-year Flash Density Map of the USA provided by
> the National Weather Service indicates that my county
> here in N. Central Florida experiences "16 and up"
> strikes/sq-km/year.
> < http://www.weather.gov/os/lightning/images/map.pdf >
> Experience bears this out...
> I live on 6 heavily wooded acres and have had at least
> 6 trees struck and killed somewhere on my property
> over the last several years.
> I make it a faithful practice to disconnect antennas
> from any gear during the frequent thunderstorms we
> experience.
> I have considered fastening a GPS antenna on the end of
> a 12 foot fiberglass pole and installing it in the top
> of one of the trees next to my workshop building so that
> it has a clear 360 deg sky view down to within a few
> degrees of the horizon.
> It would be nice to come up with some way to use fiber
> optics to isolate the GPS antenna from the receiver.
> Coming up with a solar panel and battery to isolate the
> antenna and RF preamp power is no big deal but coming up
> with a way to isolate the RF via fiber is more problematic.
> Any thoughts/comments on this...?
> Thanks!!
> Mike Baker
> Micanopy, FL
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