In ongoing collaboration with the CNRS (French National Research Organization), ABB continues to innovate and has developed a new generation of lightning protection devices – the OPR early streamer emission (ESE system). This OPR range delivers improved performance in early streamer initiation and propagation, and represents further progress in terms of lightning protection, operating autonomy and ease of maintenance. These advancements reinforce ABB’s leading position in active lightning protection, with over 200000 installations worldwide.
OPR manufacturing quality
The enviable reputation of ABB OPR is earned through maintaining consistently high manufacturing quality. Before leaving the factory, each OPR’s electronics is tested using a high voltage generator to ensure its performance and ability to conduct lightning discharges. The high voltage output pulses from the OPR are also examined to verify correct amplitude and frequency. The OPR is built to withstand the arduous conditions encountered in service, and its ongoing performance can be monitored simply and quickly using the OPR test set. OPR are made from stainless steel to ensure robust, long-standing performance in handling lightning current.
During a storm, when propagation field conditions are favorable, an OPR ESE air terminal will generate an upward leader. This upward leader from the OPR tip propagates towards the downward leader from the cloud at an average speed of 1 m/µs.
The emission of an early streamer to a lightning event delivers a beneficial triggering time compared to a single rod air terminal exposed to the same conditions. This in turn drives the enhanced performance and protective distance achievable by ESE devices.
The beneficial triggering time is determined as the average time gained at the moment of sparkover, with efficiency confirmed by high-voltage laboratory testing. All ESE tests are defined in Annex C of the French standard NF C 17-102 (2011 Version).
This beneficial triggering makes OPR air terminals especially effective for the protection of industrial sites, administrative or public buildings, monuments and open-air sites such as sports grounds.