During the summer months we experience a large amount of lightning. This exposure, of course, can cause extensive damage to data collection computers and other equipment located in the observatory operations center.
It was therefore decided to attempt to minimize this potential danger by linking as much remote sensing equipment (antennas, weather sensors, etc.) to the observatory via fiber optics links.
Due to LEO's very limited operating budget, it often becomes necessary to build or modify existing equipment to fulfill a specific need. Since most of the data collection done here invloves moderately slow data rates, inexpensive and abundantly available 1200 baud modems are being modified to operate in fiber optics mode. Testing is currently being done using fiber optics transducers recovered from obsolete equipment purchased at auction. Results are promising.
As a side note, much of the equipment used at LEO and
viewable on other pages at this site, was obtaind at extremely great prices
at various government and university auctions. For those building their
own observatories, those sources are probably the best places to obtain
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