Closure of the Electrum Project
From: Chuck Curran [SMTP:ccurran-at-execpc-dot-com]
Sent: Monday, June 01, 1998 7:58 PM
To: Tesla List
Subject: Re: Closure of the Electrum Project
Thanks for posting the shots of your project. That is a very impressive
project and some great photo's. Way in the back ground it appears that
several of those 60 million sheep are running like crazy, away from the
>From: Greg Leyh [SMTP:lod-at-pacbell-dot-net]
>Sent: Saturday, May 30, 1998 4:30 PM
>To: Tesla List
>Subject: Closure of the Electrum Project
>Here's a summary of the final installation effort at the NZ site.
>First off NZ is a cool place, a country of 3 million inventors
>and 60 million sheep. I don't recall meeting a single person
>there that I would have considered dull, except perhaps at the
>customs offices. It is now clear to me as to why NZ is so well
>represented on the TC list.
>Our only major problem was getting the 40' shipping container
>through Customs -- we were declaring the contents as a sculpture
>(12.5% tax), however the customs official said that in searching
>the container, no sculpture was found, only electrical switchgear
>and equipment (32.5% tax).
>The container was cleared after 6 days of tense negotiations.
>The install went without a hitch, using a team of highly adept
>farm workers and digger operators to erect the tower and
>install the switchgear virtually on the side of a cliff!
>Tuning values for coil onsite came very close to the Hunters Point
>numbers, about 37.9kHz. The Q of the sec (without breakout) was
>about the same as well, maybe slightly better than SF, indicating
>that the re-bar in the concrete vault walls produce no significant
>The earth grounding array worked better than expected, with a
>measured ground resistance of only 0.44 ohm! This may be due
>in part to the fact that ground array elements inadvertently
>cut through an array of septic tank irrigation lines.
>The coil is able to digest the 400V 50Hz from the substation
>with no apparent ill effects. However, the video camera monitor
>for the central manway picks up too much 50Hz noise during operation,
>trashing the sync pulses. Shielding a CCD camera placed in the
>manway may prove to be difficult.
>Occasional strikes to the ground during operation were observed when
>the wind was right. I had not expected ground strikes from this coil
>at all, due to the spherical electrode and the fact that the base of
>the secondary starts 14 feet above ground level! Improved quenching
>due to increasing the effective gap spacing may be responsible. The
>tungsten is also consumed at a quicker rate with wider gap spacing,
>but it's worth it!
>Neither sheep, yaks, nor storks approve of the coil during operation.
>One kiwi couple also joined the "2 Million Volt Club", as well!
>I don't have pix of operation in NZ as of yet, though it looks just
>like operation in SF with a different backdrop. One person shot
>some PAL footage there, and we're trying to get a copy (I still
>don't own a video camera!)
>New pictures of the install effort can be found at: