Power transmission towers are not the correct places to use lightning arresters/lightning rods. When the tower itself is a highly lightning prone structure, is it possible to protect the tower by attracting more strikes on it?
Lightning Strike Risk of High Voltage Power Transmission Towers
Lightning is the biggest threat for towers that carry power transmission lines and leading cause of power outages. In the United States alone, lightning causes over 1 billion US dollars lost annually. Major damage is seen in isolators and/or seen as break offs in lines directly and this results with no service to a whole district.
Lightning hits the tallest and sharpest structure in an area because emission of ground charges at a corner of tall objects is much faster comparing to shorter structures around. Emitted ground charges meet with opposite charged streamers of cloud and lightning current flows through the object of ground charge emission.
High voltage tranmission towers are usually highest structures around with sharp top corners. They are made of steel and this conductive material and structural properties make these towers a target for lightning strikes.
There is definitely a need of lightning protection for power transmission towers.
Lightning Rods and Wires for Transmission Lines?
Transmission towers have steel wires located at top and connected to eachother with other towers. These wires are installed with a purpose to attract lightning on themselves and carry lightning current without letting any damage on power lines beneath them or components of transmission system.
Lightning may hit the steel wire directly and lightning current can be carried with no harmful results on power lines. However, in most cases lightning hits the top sharp point of the tower where charge emission level is much higher comparing to flat arrester wires with lower charge emission levels.
Lightning hits the top sharp point of tower; lightning current flows to the ground through tower body, damages the components and cause break offs in power lines. Lightning current can also be carried through power lines and damaging reults can reach to electronics in facilities tens of kilometers away.
Lightning arrester wire can be useful if the tower can be isolated and if current flow through power lines can be avoided.
Lightning must be kept away from tower and must be directed to arrester steel wire.
Best way of being protected from direct lightning strike damages and secondary damages by electromagnetic field of lightning current is to keep lightning away from the tower.
The point of lightning hit depends on the ground charge accumulation and emission on a structure. Lightning hits the point of emission and lightning current flows down to the ground through the structure.
EvoDis® Lightning Prevention System dissipates the charges on transmission towers through thousands of tiny sharp points and makes the protected site “invisible” to lightning.
Lightning acts as if the tower does not exist there and lightning strike is directed to lightning arrester wires. This prevents any possible damage on power lines and components. Lightning current can not be carried to facilities or can not damage sensitive electronics inside.
EvoDis® Lightning Prevention System is a lightning protection solution with 100% success in high voltage laboratory tests and in field tests. EvoDis® has been applied to hundreds of towers worldwide and none of these towers have been hit by lightning since the dates of installation.
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Best way of lightning protection is to stay away from it.
EvoDis® Lightning Prevention System keeps lightning away.