Marijuana grow-lights cause problems for ham-radio operators – Colorado Springs Independent

Marijuana grow-lights cause problems for ham-radio operators Colorado Springs Independent In a March 12 letter to the commission, the American Radio Relay League, the national association for amateur radio, complained that interference from grow…


Fascinating article from the “Colorado Springs Independent” about the growing interference to amateur radio and public service communications from marijuana grow lights.  The culprit is the ballast that feeds power to the lights.  These lights emit a raspy sound that”screws up amateur radio transmissions.”  On 12 March 2014, the ARRL sent the FCC a letter outlining the problem and naming the Lumatek LK1000 grow light as a prime suspect.  What the Justice Department won’t or can’t do may be solved by the FCC, which has jurisdiction over the nation’s commercial, public service, and amateur radio frequencies.  Lately, FCC inspectors have increased enforcement efforts and have levied heavy fines against people who interfer with “a licensed, legally protected practice.”  According to Colorado amateur radio operator Jim Bloodgood (KD0SFY), marijuana grow lights have the potential to disrupt emergency communications during natural or man-made disasters.  Grow lights aren’t the only culprits in the rapidly expanding radio environment.  Garage door openers, remote controls, personal computers, Wi-Fi routers, and other electronic devices contribute their own rf “hash”.  Our electronic environment is rapidly becoming “polluted”.  Aloha de Russ (KH6JRM).

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