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1938 - engineers hurled an artificial lightning bolt of more than 3,000,000 volts at this completely self-protected distribution transformer

DETOURED LIGHTNING

E&MP 72.060

Artificial Lightning

ca. 1938

Westinghouse engineers hurled an artificial lightning bolt of more than 3,000,000 volts at this completely self-protected distribution transformer to demonstrate their latest defense against Nature's electrical bombardments.

The camera caught the bolt as it struck the transmission pole and showed it being bypassed to ground by the transformer, which is protected by deion gaps.

The gaps detour the lightning to ground but quench the attempt of normal line voltage to follow it.

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No. 5
Baffled Lightning--Fifty different times, Westinghouse engineers have hurled the equivalent of a natural lightning stroke into this protected distribution transformer and each time it has withstood the blow of 50,000 amperes at a rise of between three and four million volts pressure.

The transformer is protected with de-ion gaps which bypass the lightning stroke into the ground and quench the attempt of the normal line voltage to follow the lightning out of the line and cause an interruption in service.

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[SNL images similar but not replicas of originals - Westinghouse photo numbered 248723, No. 5 and 3533 respectfully, see: 072.080 - 072.096 - 072.102

Original Caption by Science Service
Westinghouse



National Museum of American History

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