Industry

A large number of industries are sensitive to lightning strikes. Météorage provides industry with the information needed to minimise the consequences and to implement solutions to secure processes and protect property and people. These services also enable industry to satisfy French and European regulations.

According to INERIS, the French National Institute for Industrial Environment and Risks, “one quarter of industrial installations are struck by lightning at least once every five years.”

The findings of the analysis of those accidents speak for themselves:

“Lightning is a significant cause of major accidents in the industrial setting, causing damage which may cost several millions of euros at just a single plant.It is liable to affect all types of activity, even though reported accidents tend to concentrate most particularly on refineries and the heavy chemicals industry.”

Where data are available, the damage is estimated at millions of euros.

This sector is interested in protecting property and people in line with the company’s activities; and for the majority of continuous process industries, keeping the production equipment up and running is also essential. The majority of damage is caused by disruption to the electricity supply.

This is the case with many industries operating round the clock, such as the food, textiles, paper, card, rubber, plastics, automotive, aeronautical and space industries etc..: if there is a failure in the power supply, in addition to the damage caused, there is also the time needed to get the production equipment running again which has cost implications.

Other industries such as electronics and IT also have special “clean rooms” where the air is kept extremely pure by complex filter systems.

Thus any interruption to the supply could be catastrophic for the components and the rooms themselves.

The important thing is therefore to halt sensitive production equipment at the right moment, particularly to avoid sudden drops or surges in voltage, or even to disconnect from the mains supply grid and start up independent power sources.

In sectors such as chemistry, petrochemicals and more generally any activity presenting a risk to users, Météorage’s services are of additional value: to be able to halt the handling and use of flammable and explosive products, or to evacuate personnel from sensitive areas.

In addition, many industries use independent electrical power sources in order to supply their processes (generators, cogeneration plants etc.), particularly at times of thunderstorm activity when they cut themselves off from the main supply grid to avoid overvoltages or momentary power outages.

The choice to switch over to these systems and to reconnect after a storm can often be quite random if it is left to the judgement of a human operator.

Quite apart from helping to avoid the loss of production or material damage, the information helps optimise the consumption of independent power supply sources, which is a major concern for industrial sites faced with this “electrical dilemma”.

Lightning information therefore helps increase safety, particularly in terms of the risk to humans, but also to achieve savings through greater security for property.

Finally, since the risk of a fire caused by sparkover is one of the most probable causes of damage leading to an insurance claim, being able precisely to locate a strike in the immediate vicinity helps resolve any contention.

 

Our solutions:

   

  • Lightning strike statistics for your site:know your risk and improve your protection accordingly.
  • Alert and observation services:be informed in good time of the arrival and end of a thunderstorm so that you can adjust your activities for the duration of the storm.
  • Remote lightning strike counter: Record lightning strikes on your site to check possible damage.