Marijuana grow lights can interfere with electronics

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Marijuana thrives under artificial light, but radio enthusiasts say they are experiencing radio interference from grow light ballasts. Anza Valley Outlook/Diane Sieker photo
Amateur radio enthusiasts in the Anza Valley are reporting mysterious static on their radios, from base or home units to mobile CB radios. The intensity of the radio interference may be caused by marijuana grow lights – namely, the light’s ballasts. Grow lamps are low-resistance units when lit, but they require a high voltage bump to get started. A ballast is a device that provides large enough voltage to get the light started, then regulates the amount of electricity going into the bulbs. The American Radio Relay League, the national association for amateur radio, said that ballasts in many lights, such as the Lumatek LK-1000, can catastrophically interfere with amateur radio communications, notably in Colorado and California. Laws allowing the cultivation of cannabis in these s
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