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Commercial Lightning Protection for Railways

Lightning is a natural phenomenon that can have a significant impact on railway facilities. Electricity is a major part of railway system operations and the multitude of parts and components it takes to build the railroads across the world are numerous.

A train is a metallic structure, equivalent to a conductive mesh, and therefore a direct lightning strike does not cause damages to the vehicle structure.

However, this does not avoid the direct strike and overvoltage to the electric lines – the overhead traction structure literally forms a huge lightning antenna, which if struck by lightning can damage or even disable the internal equipment, stopping the train and disabling communications. That’s why lightning protection of railway facilities is a vital part of its safe, reliable operations.

As the electrical and electronic equipment in the railway industry has become more complex and integral to the modern design and operation, protection against lightning strikes becomes ever more critical. 

Many complications can arise from a lightning strike, such as:

  1. Safety risks to personnel
  2. Damage to critical equipment
  3. Data corruption
  4. Operational downtime

To protect your railways from the dangers of a direct lightning strike, LEC offers patented lightning elimination product called the Dissipation Array System (DAS).

Unlike lightning rod systems, our DAS completely isolates facilities from a direct lightning strike by bleeding off the induced charge on the protected area during the course of a thunderstorm, reducing it to a much lower level in relationship to the surrounding environment. This suppresses the formation of an upward rising streamer, one of the required elements of the strike process, thus avoiding the strike. It is the only such system where the lightning impulse is not encouraged, but discouraged. In fact, DAS technology has proven to be more than 99.87% effective in eliminating all strikes to protected areas.

In addition to the increased uptime, your railway system will achieve a significant savings in repair costs.

To conclude, Lightning is always a threat to facilities with critical operations and businesses, not limited to only the railway system. Any traffic system that depends on smooth operations and minimal downtime needs to get their facilities well-protected from any unforeseen weather conditions. With our lightning protection solutions (including the DAS technology), we are very keen to contribute and ensure business continuity for our customers.

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