Vaisala, a provider of environmental and industrial measurement, has developed the capability to distinguish cloud-to-ground lightning strokes that contain continuing current, the most damaging of lighting strokes. According to the company, the technology is suited for energy industries such as wind power.
Vaisala says the technology offers precision in identifying these strokes, which can last up to 1,000 times as long as a typical lighting stroke and may be more likely to cause fire or other extreme heat-related damage.
“Our patent-pending technique is a game-changer in lightning detection,” says Brooke Pearson, Vaisala’s global solutions manager for lightning. “For the first time, industries where charge transfer from lightning is a threat, including electric utilities, oil and gas, wind farms, and land management organizations, can identify and target the small percentage of lightning strokes most likely to cause asset damage or start fires.”
Vaisala’s technologies detect both cloud and cloud-to-ground lightning. They include the National Lightning Detection Network (NLDN) in the U.S., which detects cloud-to-ground lightning strokes with a location accuracy of fewer than 150 meters, and the GLD360 global lightning network, which has the ability to detect lightning anywhere in the world.
By leveraging new data now available from NOAA’s Geostationary Lightning Mapper, Vaisala is able to transform existing NLDN and GLD360 data to provide new insight.