REPOST – The Halo Effect – Grounding Around the Tower

(Several Articles were requested to be reposted – they were originally done before the RSS feed was active) 

Once the tower base was in and the tower in place, the grounding project was next up.

With the help of a friend who is a Electrical Contractor the same techniques used to measure the grounding needed at Aircraft Navigation devices was used. Luck was that my soil conditions provided an excellent ground.

I decided on a “Halo” of several ground rods connected by grounding cable, and that cable brought back to the tower frame.

The Rods in Place

First rod holes were dug and the 8 foot copper-clad grounding rods sunk using a hammer drill.

As the connections would be buried, one-shot Thermonic Welds were used.

Here is a typical welding kit:

Exothermic Welding Kit - One-Shot Type

The theory is that these welds will not loosen up, and are assured electrical contacts.

Once installed an ignitor was used to fire the weld.

Fired Exothermic Weld

You can leave all the mold parts in place, but wanting to inspect each weld mine were broken off.

Breaking Off the Casing
Example Weld Cleared of its Mold

Each Weld was fired and inspected.

Another Finished Weld

and the Halo tied back into the tower.

Future Plans include hooking a radial system back into the tower.

Measurments with my contractor friend’s gear have confirmed a great safety ground has been acheived, and the grounding Halo is also functioning as excellent basic RF ground.



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4 thoughts on “REPOST – The Halo Effect – Grounding Around the Tower

  1. F1JKJ says:

    Hi Steve ? Did you make an equipotential tie between the tower ground and the shack (and home) ground ?

  2. k9zw says:

    My operating desk is 70m away from the tower base, so there is not a direct ground connection.



  3. Greg, KI6GIG says:

    Where can you get the one-shot welding kits?

    • k9zw says:

      Hi Greg Ki6GIG,

      I have bought some from a local Electrical Supply House, some I bought from a friend who is an Electrical Contractor and some I’ve picked up from suppliers in bigger towns.

      They are not regulated or limited (at least they were not when I put in my ground halo) and some suppliers offer them over the internet.

      Hazard Shipping might apply if you have the shipped to you.

      Of course local situations for rules & regulations may be different where you are, and may have changed in the few years.

      I was able to rent the mold-blocks for some of the specialist CAD welds from a local contractor.



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