Back in my undergraduate days at the University of Maryland, one of my electrical engineering professors went to his campus office late one night in order to get some work done. When he got there, he saw that the entire section of the campus was dark. He learned that the electricity has been turned off at the substation due to ongoing construction nearby.
This did not faze him. He grabbed a flashlight from his car, used his key to let himself into the engineering building, went to his office, and located the breaker panel for the floor. He knew there was an independent substation feed used for experiments. After turning off all the other breakers, he put a jumper between this and the one for his office and closed the panel back up. Then he went to his office, flipped on the lights, and started working.
Before long, a campus security officer patrolling the sea of darkness was astonished to discover the lighted window. He went into the engineering building and checked the light switches -- they didn't work. He went to the professor's door and, after checking his ID, asked: "How ... ?" Rather than attempt any explanation, the professor simply said: Would you believe a big battery?
Knowledge is power!
This entry was submitted by Orin Laney and edited by Rob Spiegel.
Orin Laney is a veteran consultant in EMC, signal integrity, mixed signal design, and RF instrumentation. He lives in Silicon Valley and is about to receive his MSEE degree from San Jose State University.
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