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What are spikes and surges?

by Nyal Mellor April 08, 2013

What are spikes and surges?

Lightning* is perhaps the most well known surge event as it is capable of causing catastrophic equipment damage where whole systems are destroyed with one 6000V+ strike.

More nefarious are the effects of the multiple daily spikes that slowly destroy your capacitors, chips and other electronic components causing lockups, decreased performance and shortened equipment life.

These spikes, thought to represent 80% of all recorded transients, are most often caused by devices within your home or studio – such as appliances, air conditioning units,  power tools and lighting –  switching on and off.

* Lightning incidence varies dramatically by geographic area. The IEEE C62.41 defines a 20kV, 10kA surge (a ‘C3 combination wave’) as the worst that could be expected at the service entrance.

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