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Thunderstorm Season (Yes, That's a Thing!)

By John Powell on Jun 7, 2017 1:00:00 PM

In the wintertime, humidity levels plummet as temperatures drop and forced air heating systems dry the air out even more. During these months we are extra conscious of electrostatic discharge. Many will make a habit of grounding themselves to a doorknob or rack case before touching any controls in the studio, so as to avoid zapping the electronics with static electricity.

When winter gives way to warmer weather, thunderstorms and line surges present a new threat to our precious technology. Broadcast engineers take steps to protect their mains power inputs with spike suppressors and surge protectors. These devices can help, but can only do so much with the extremely fast transient swings in voltage that are observed during these events. There are also threats that are not so obvious.

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Topics: Broadcast Technology, Broadcast Engineering, Telephone Systems

What do you do when the power goes out?

By Clark Novak on Oct 31, 2011 12:49:00 PM

On September 9, 2011, much of Southern California and portions of Western Arizona and Baja were blacked out by a cascading failure of the San Diego Gas & Electric power grid.

As has been noted lately by many in the industry, radio is still the public's first and best source of information during emergencies. This was proved once more during this blackout, which lasted between 12 and 14 hours. As soon as the power was out, my family tuned to our LP-1, KOGO, whose generators and backup systems worked flawlessly to keep the station on-air. Their professional news staff and reporters kept information flowing into the late night; my wife and I (and many others, I'm sure) fell asleep to the radio knowing that things were well in hand.

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Topics: Telephone Systems


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