fluorescent ballast Re: transformers

From:  Bill Noble [SMTP:william_b_noble-at-email.msn-dot-com]
Sent:  Tuesday, June 16, 1998 1:40 AM
To:  Tesla List
Subject:  fluorescent ballast Re: transformers

the flourescent ballasts provide a HV kick to start the plasma discharge,
and they provide current limiting - inside is an inductor and a capacitor or
two.   off the top of my head, running voltage on a fluorescent is on the
order of 60 volts, start voltage on an 8 ft tube on the order of 900 V - I
don't have my fluorescent light handbook handy any more.  On the older type
ballasts that work with a starter, they are an inductor only, when the
starter is cold, it is a short, placing the filaments in series across the
inductor - you get about 12 V to heat the filaments.  Then the starter heats
up and goes open circuit and the voltage spike ignites the tube.

Probably not of great value for generating tesla coil voltages, but an old
starter may be useful as part of a inductive element in a power line filter,
if your current is really low - like 100 to 500 ma.

>From:  Adam Parker [SMTP:park_e_r-at-hiwaay-dot-net]
>Sent:  Monday, June 15, 1998 1:48 PM
>To:  Tesla List
>Subject:  Re: transformers
>If i remember correctly Rob, the ballast transformers are only used as a
>way to ignite the tubes when there are turned on. The ballast first raises
>the amperage I believe and then lowers is condiderably (causing that
>annoying flickering). Thats why it takes more power to turn them off and on
>than to leave them running. I have no idea what the constant "running"
>voltage is for a flourescent tube however i don't think they would serve
>well in tesla use. I've often thought about these myself, (possibly as
>current limiters, etc.) I would definately get a secind opinion as my
>knowledge in ballast types is limited.
>While on the subject of ballasts....
>I run my shoplight off of a power strip. (the kind with the neon light
>when time to shut down I simply unplug the power strip and leave the light
>plug where it is. About a month ago I noticed that after I unpluged the
>cord the neon light stayed on then dimmed out within about two-three
>seconds. Later I tested the recently unpluged light and discovered the
>light kept a charge of 65 volts!
>Do ballasts normally do that? Was anyone else out there observed a similiar
>capacitance  in there lights?
>----------Original Message----------
>From:  Robert Stern [SMTP:robertl-at-enter-dot-net]
>Sent:  Sunday, June 14, 1998 6:17 PM
>To:  Tesla List
>Subject:  transformers
>>Does anyone know if you can use several flourescent light
>>transformers(input-120vac, output-700vac) as the power supply circuit on
>>a tesla coil?