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Published on Apr 8, 2012
Thinking about lightning storms, I decided to try an idea for a low height radiant energy collection system. Approx 100ft of co-axial cable was found, in several sections around the house and some came from a satellite dish. The Ground is a steel pipe that was here when we moved here in 2008. The co-ax runs from the pipe, through the collection circuit and along the backyard fence...approx 5ft only in height from the ground.
Situated well away from any power wires or other electrical cables, the system at te moment, pulls through 0.71V. By using a 220uF or 330uF capacitor, a 'Penny' circuit can run (see Lidmotor's channel for the Penny oscillator circuit diagram).
If furthered, such a system would represent a method for night indications for hikers, walkers or even Bigfoot, to navigate trails. Once a trail was found at night, the direction of safety would be easily identified...flashing light on the left means going toward, flashing light on the right means moving away.
With the circuit not connected, approx 10V has been drawn into a 220uF capacitor. An overnight run should see that figure climb still higher. Using Zener diodes or some other means, a cap dump system could see battery topping with this system. 1.5V AA's should be able to be charged and that idea will be trialled. It;s not a lot but, no need for the sun, no risk of lightning strikes and it's a method that;s been around since Nikola Tesla's 1901 Patent described it !
However, i've not seen one built horizontally, normally a mast is raised or metal collector plates are placed are used high up by some other means.