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Coronal Mass Ejection = Buzzing Coaxial Outlet?

  1. Mar 7, 2012 #1
    Hello all. Let me start with my main question and then provide a bit more background.

    I just noticed that an unused coaxial cable outlet in my apartment is periodically producing a faint but very noticeable buzzing sound. It seems to come and go, flickering on and off sometimes and sometimes lasting for as much as a minute. Is it possible that this has anything to do with the large coronal mass ejection which took place very recently?

    My initial thoughts on that question went something like this: "no way... well, maybe..."

    I have a BS in electrical engineering and work in the field of advanced batteries, so I know what electrical arcing sounds like. It doesn't sound like arcing to me, but I can't imagine what else could be producing a sound from inside that junction box. I also took the face plate off of the outlet and glanced inside. It was tough to see, but there is a three way coax splitter in there. I could not see any loose, frayed, or burnt wires. Unfortunately I don't have my multimeter with me so I can't check the voltage on the wires.

    I was under the impression that any signals on coaxial cables would be of relatively low voltage, maybe a few volts at most. I wouldn't expect this to produce arcing or such a noticeable buzzing.

    To bring it back to my main questions:

    1. Any ideas on what might be causing this noise?

    2. Is it possible that the recent CME had anything to do with this? I believe it is a new problem as of today. I know that CMEs can cause surges of currents in wiring on Earth so is it possible that a CME could damage something in my coax cable or splitter which would cause this buzzing?

    Thanks for any replies!
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 8, 2012 #2


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    Gold Member

    well the CME hasnt quite reached here yet, so no not likely

    you need to look for a more earthly explanation :)

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