Any metal mast should be grounded.
It will build up a static charge which can cause interference, for example.
Any metal mast should be grounded.
even a grounded mast will create static charge during thunderstorms. I think it would be even more!
A grounded mast is saver, as when lightning hits it, the current will flow mostly through the thick wire (copper strip?), instead of through the wooden post, possibly setting it on fire.
Grounding eliminates potential that can build up on unbonded conductors/ariels.
During a very active thunderstorm, static activity along the highest and pointiest/corners/etc can be quite high. A direct strike will definitely result in burnouts/damage whether there is a ground or not. If the ground is inadequate it will just “smoke” just like a fuse and the excess kinetic energy finds it way, often with catastrophic consequences/destruction.
A completely ungrounded wooden post is the worst. Splinterville!
Insurance claims are a certainty with a direct dwelling strike due to the amount of damage.
Many electronics can be damaged permanently even with a strike to power lines miles away particularly if the wiring/grounding is poor. If there is no good path at the demarc and flashovers occur to conductors/feeders at points other than designed they are often huge and loud! Very destructive currents will be realized further downstream often far in excess of the capacity of surge protection. If you’ve heard a ‘pop’ noise inside your home when lightning flashes nearby you have witness this phenomenon. The standard flashover voltage is 6.6kV in an electric panel. This assumes the panel is properly installed and bonded of course. Even still, the 6.6kV has to be dealt with and most device power supplies have MOVs that can handle it. Of course they are limited by the number of times this happens.
I’ve seen improperly installed telephony equipment where so much kinetic energy was sent down 100 pair cables that every bend or twist in the cable had its outer jacket broken up or holed like a bullet was inside breaking out! Even worse, the wallboard was black with flame marks and copper plating from molten conductors. All of that happens in a flash literally. Definitely don’t want to be in the closet when that happens!
my point was that when the bottom of a thundercloud is positively charged, electrons will be drawn to the top of the mast, even better when grounded (infinite supply of electrons). This causes a build up of static electricity in the top. As much that it ionizes the air around it. (sometimes even visible in the form of St. Elmo’s fire). This makes the air more conductive, and it creates small feelers towards the sky, thereby attracting the lightning.
Here you go, install these and kill two birds with one stone!
That is you have bird and lightning mitigation!
We’re these comments about founding the result of my set-up? I originally installed in a 10’ pvc, but it seemed t away too much. So, I thought this set-up was a better (more stable) option. Before proceeding, I contacted Tempest support to ask their ‘expert opinion. I was concerned about electrical strikes, etc. They assured me it won’t be a problem since the galvanized pipe contacts the ground. I have the email correspondence.
I really don’t want to lose my $300 device over such a thing. I’d rather go back to a shorter PVC.
Please advise further
most likely if the lightning ever hits the metal pole, your unit will be lost. If you want to change the pole is your choice. It also depends a bit on how often lightning hit at all in your neighborhood. If there are other, higher objects around that attract the lightning (like trees), then they reduce the chance of hitting your mast.
Well yes, if the unit was struck by lightning I would expect it to be rendered inoperable. My question was in response to my inferring you thought it was at increased risk? And the speculative damage, another post suggested, a strike might cause to the fence post.
Now it seems to me, you are more uncertain? The tree line in the background is about 30’ linear away, and most are 4-6 times (40-60’) taller than this mounting technique. The pipe, while mounted (clamped) to the post is also imbedded a couple inches into the ground.
I suppose my question remains unanswered at this point. Thanks for the responses nevertheless.
I’m still very sure a metal pole will attract the lightning, a pvc one doesn’t. What I cannot assess for you is how much this increased chance of lightning should effect your choice of poles. That also depends on your environment. If you are going to use a metal one, it is better to ground it.
Perhaps I should move to roof then on a brace and just 3-4’ pvc. It’ll be higher and result in better wind capture. My only hesitation was lack of access once mounts, but it seems I may not need to access it. It’s not very clear to me how often the unit needs any maintenance. Or, perhaps I’ll see what happens as we head into spring and summer. Let it ride, as some might say.
normally you don’t need access. but you never know. If you can have access yourself and don’t have to hire someone to do it for you, this might be a good option.
Are you concerned regarding lightning strikes given the uses of steel pole? I ask cause yours seems at more risk than mine in terms of surrounding structures, and someone made such comments regarding mine.
I would not believe anybody here one way or the other as being authoritative, unless they’re electrical professionals in that exact field.
Perhaps you might consult your insurance company or your local municipal permitting office for guidance. They’re the accredited professionals.
FWIW, if you’re worried about the Tempest on that split rail fence in the photo you provided, I wouldn’t lose a lot of sleep over it, but I don’t do that stuff for a living. You’re more likely to get that fence destroyed by a bunch of deer being frightened by lightning than the risk of the lightning hitting the Tempest.
here is one of the best videos explaining some aspects of lightning HOW LIGHTNING WORKS - Weird World of Lightning - YouTube
LOL - thanks for the comforting thought. As for deer. We have plenty. Fence is no obstacle to them. Even the young fawns clear it with ease.