Monday, January 4, 2016

Dancing powerlines, think about a alternative power source

At the moment we have a unusual weather situation in the north eastern part of Netherlands. It is raining, freezing and we had a large wind from the east. Cold arriving from Russia ;-).  It is causing a phenomenon called "powerline dancing". The results do appear on the main electricity as sometimes the light is flickering and short breaks. Worst is that lights are shining brighter sometimes and that means voltage peaks which are not good for electronics. Just to be shure I left my shack off the grid. Luckely no damage to other household appliances yet. Here a video that appeared on the local TV to clarify the story (courtesy

This brings me back on my ideas to power my entire radioshack with alternative power. Powering the complete house is just too expensive right now. Part of my station is already on solarpower since 2012. I want to be independent from the electrical grid. What happened now is something that we as ham radio operators should think about. We are very much depending with almost everything we use in daily life from electricity that we buy from providers. But what if extreme weather, disasters, war or whatever you can think off is wiping out the electricity, what would you do? People will trust in you because you're a radio operator that is able to communicate in case of emergency. Oh yes, you can....but not without....electricity.

What would you use for a alternative power source in case of emergency? Or in preparation for a power outage?


  1. Hoi Bas, bij de zendamateurs in o.a. VS zie je vaak een partij 24V accu's met een converter naar ca. 12V die constant worden bijgeladen. Valt de netspanning weg dan kunnen ze enkele dagen in de lucht blijven. Gelukkig komt dat hier in NL niet zo vaak voor maar ik heb wel 4x 12V 7,2A accu's aangeschaft die ik regelmatig oplaadt en hiermee een van de sets mee kan voeden incl. kleine verlichting. Gelukkig duurt een spanningsuitval hier maar hooguit een paar uur, maar er zijn in het verleden ook uitvallen geweest (Utrecht)van enkele dagen dus....... je weet maar nooit. 73 Hans, PE1BVQ

    1. Hallo Hans, ik heb zelf inderdaad ook altijd een 7Ah accu standby staan maar dat is voor 100W niet lang zenden. Ik zou liever gaan voor een paar zonnepanelen en een deep cycle accu van zo een 200Ah. Misschien in combinatie met de powergate van de reactie hier onder. 73, Bas

  2. Hello Bas - I use a 12v deep cycle "marine" battery and one of these:

    I can operate for about 30 minutes at 100 watts (CW) on the battery before the rig complains - much longer if QRP. But mainly I like having battery back-up to prevent unplanned outages to the rig, ie I use it as a UPS system.

    Best to you and your family in 2016!

    73 - John AE5X

  3. Hello John, thanks for your useful comment. I think this is what every radioamateur should consider for his shack. Have you ever used it at a power outage? 73, Bas


Thanks for your comment. Bedankt voor je reactie. 73, Bas