240 V Surge Protection ?

Discussion in 'Amateur Radio Amplifiers' started by N4UP, Jan 14, 2016.

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  1. N4UP

    N4UP Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I explained what happened and described the symptoms to the folks at Alpha. They were the ones who told me it was likely the main controller board. The "controller" lost its serial port, lost its "memory" of frequency bands, and the timing is off. Without the serial port working, they have to reload the firmware at the factory. The serial port was NOT connected at the time.

    The Alpha was turned on at the time, along with some other gear, and ONLY the Alpha was damaged. The Alpha was NOT connected in any way to any of my computers. The only connections to the Alpha were the 240V 20A power cable, the RF input and output coax, station ground strap, and the TX line from the transceiver.

    All of my other equipment, including the FTdx5000mp which was I was operating at the time, continues to function normally, radios, computers, antennas, everything but the Alpha.

    The result, damage to the Alpha, is surprising to me also. For the $8339 that I paid ( just before the price drop ), you would think the Alpha/controller circuitry would be better protected.
  2. G3YRO

    G3YRO Ham Member QRZ Page

    It's not just that our cables are underground . . . they are 3-phase, and fed from a huge transformer at a sub-station, not a tiny one on a pole! The cables are very thick, each covered in a metal sheath, and only every third house along the street taps onto the same phase, to get 240V. (so this also reduces mains-bourne electrical noise from neighbours)

    I've never known anyone get a surge on their mains supply !

    And yes, we very rarely get any lightning over here.
  3. AC0OB

    AC0OB Subscriber QRZ Page

  4. AA7QQ

    AA7QQ Ham Member QRZ Page

    Surge supressors are a 1 shot deal.

  5. KV6O

    KV6O Ham Member QRZ Page

  6. WA9SVD

    WA9SVD Ham Member QRZ Page

    And will that protect from the EMP pulse from even a near-by lightning strike? Famous last words here in Southern California is "we don't get lightning or tornadoes." I remember when a "mini-tornado" (aka waterspout) tore part of the roof off a local grocery supermarket, several miles inland, and a local pole mounted transformer sustained a direct hit by a "freak" lightning hit in an unusual thunderstorm. As the saying goes, "NEVER say never."

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