Enhanced lightning location system will help keep power staff safe EA Technology’s new lightning detector pole in Anglesey will increase accuracy when plotting electrical storms (centre) in north west Britain, to warn power companies of danger to personnel and structures. System coverage (right) includes offshore power sites.
has been granted planning permission to erect a new lightning detector pole in Newborough Forest, Isle of Anglesey, North Wales, to enhance the accuracy of its system for plotting electrical storms as they develop across the British Isles. The company’s lightning location system
is the only one of its kind in the UK and Ireland, and has been operating for more than 20 years to provide early warnings of lightning strikes, so power companies in particular can take measures to protect staff and structures.
The pole will replace one of six already located across the UK, which detect lightning strikes as they happen and triangulate their position to an accuracy of within 100 metres. The system plots up to 100 strikes per second and provides real time maps of how electrical storms are developing and moving.EA Technology
project manager Ralph Eyre-Walker said: “The Newborough pole will replace one in Cheshire and give us greater accuracy when plotting storms in North Wales, North West England, Ireland, the Irish Sea and into the Atlantic. This will be particularly valuable for protecting power assets and personnel at new offshore and onshore installations, including wind farms.
“We chose the Forestry Commission site at Newborough Forest
because the pole needs to be away from power lines and on flat ground. The specific location is ideal because it is in a small clearing already used for storing maintenance materials and the pole will be below the level of existing trees, so it will be virtually invisible, with negligible impact on the environment.”
The pole is a passive receiver which only detects and locates emissions from lightning strikes. It does not emit any waves or radiation itself.
In addition to acting as an early warning system, EA Technology’s lightning database contains records of UK and Ireland strikes over 20 years. The information is used to quantify the risks of strikes in specific areas and design the most effective lightning protection systems.
More information at www.eatechnology.com