We have grown so used to our phones being a direct communication line to other people as well as the internet that we rarely think about the technology involved in this process. We have grown so used to using them on a daily basis that we no longer think about what is necessary to make the entire process happen, and also the challenges that are faced by the cellular companies. Intense competition between companies has reduced the margins that they operate within to extreme levels. Customers now demand not only the fastest and clearest calls and internet connections, but they want it for a price that is almost unfathomable. When we think about the increasing demands that customers are placing on cellular companies in the form of faster networks and the ability to transmit or receive large amounts of data, only then do we start to consider the challenges that are faced by the companies that provide these services. We’re finding that the ways that these companies are now improving their own bottom line is through exploration of technological advancements to enable savings in both operating and capital expenditures. By deploying improved surge protection devices on their networks, cellular providers have been able to increase their profitability, and remain competitive within the space. If not for these devices installed on the network, cellular companies would be required to raise customer prices, and consumers will rarely tolerate large increases. Through the ability to find cost savings by extending the life span of equipment, customer prices are able to remain relatively low while network capacities are increased to meet demand.
The way this is accomplished is through the inclusion of lightning protectors within cell towers. Because of their physical makeup and their general position, cell towers are magnets for lightning strikes. Lightning strikes will almost always happen near the top of the cell tower, damaging equipment at that point. What we have found in the past is that the majority of cost as far as repairs is not isolated to the equipment at the top of the tower. Instead, that cost is found in the necessity to repair or replace equipment that is nowhere near the top, yet connected to it through power lines or data transfer cables. The strike to the tower top produces an electrical surge that travels along these cables and damages the downstream equipment by destroying internal circuitry. Through the inclusion of improved surge protection devices in the form of lightning protectors, this equipment can be salvaged. The technological improvements to surge protection devices within the systems over the course of the last decade has now allowed not only the equipment lifespan to be extended, but it also keeps systems online and customers happy. The most advanced surge protection equipment will divert or cut off the flow of electricity over a measured amount, then come back on line to protect from future strikes without having to be replaced.. The surge protection devices are not rendered inoperable once they have performed their function. Many times there are multiple lightning strikes to the same tower during inclement weather. Because the surge protection devices are not rendered inoperable by the first strike, the systems remain protected and online at all times. These improvements are advancing our ability to communicate every day.