Category Archives: Electronics

US Coast Guard Warns of LED Lighting Interference to Marine Radios, AIS Reception

The US Coast Guard says it’s received reports from crews, ship owners, inspectors, and other mariners regarding poor reception on VHF radiotelephone, digital selective calling (DSC), and automatic identification systems (AIS) when in the vicinity of LED lighting systems. This could include interior and exterior lighting, navigation lights, searchlights, and floodlights found on vessels of all sizes.

“Radio frequency interference caused by these LED lamps [was] found to create potential safety hazards,” the Coast Guard said in an August 15 Marine Safety Alert. “For example, the maritime rescue coordination center in one port was unable to contact a ship involved in a traffic separation scheme incident by VHF radio. That ship also experienced very poor AIS reception. Other ships in different ports have experienced degradation of the VHF receivers, including AIS, caused by their LED navigation lights. LED lighting installed near VHF antennas has also shown to compound the reception.”

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Finding Noise with an Antenna

by Kristina Panos

[K5ACL], aka [SignalSearch], recently brought his active receive loop antenna in off the roof to give it a checkup and perform any necessary maintenance. While it was in the shack, he took the opportunity to discuss how well it would perform indoors. The verdict? Not ideal. He’d mount it 50 feet away from the house if the HOA would let him.

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The Worst Ground Ever Seen

Gotta Go To Ground

The Worst I’ve Ever Seen! – a tribute to the line our late friend Richard Haskey would deliver
upon seeing something like this at a site– is not designed to embarrass anyone. 

Rather, this is a chance for us to learn from others’ experiences. And, OK, laugh a bit or spit up some coffee.

Most every experienced engineer knows studio and transmitter installations work much better with a good grounding system,
In fact, some transmitter manufacturers and consulting engineers often make it a point to tell users that ensuring a solid ground will prevent many problems, especially with static and lightning

On the other hand, there are grounds for arresting (pun intended) the individual who performed this installation.

No, we are not going to tell you who nor where. We can only hope that he is still breathing but not working at your site.

But, it does take your breath away, does it not?



History of the Power Cord

Nowadays, getting power to your devices really is just as simple as plugging something into a wall outlet, but it certainly took some time and effort to get to that point. Dating back to the 1800s, the invention and further development of power distribution has led us to the world of electrical convenience great inventors like Thomas Edison dreamed of. In the accompanying infographic, we’ll take a look at the electrifying history of the power cord, from the invention of vulcanized rubber to more modern means of insulation and conduction. Grab a seat, plug in, and read on to learn more! Continue reading History of the Power Cord