Analysis of ddce efficiency at las pardinas tower 2003 2015 en
ANALYSIS OF THE EFFECTIVENESS OF THE DDCE AT LAS PARDINAS, 2003 - 2015
• An analysis of the effectiveness of the DDCE device was
performed in the context of direct lightning strikes on a
telecommunications tower belonging to ANDORRA TELECOM,
located in the area of LAS PARDINAS in the Western Pyrenees,
at an altitude of 2300 metres.
• The analysis is based on data provided by the MÉTÉORAGE
company, a subsidiary of the FRENCH National Institute of
• The system used was Remote Sensing by triangulation of the
lightning signal, with a margin of error of ±50 metres.
• The tracking radius was 2 km around the telecommunications
• Date of the DDCE lightning protection installation: 21 JUNE, 2003
• Direct strikes on the tower before the installation of the DDCE in
2003: YES, there were direct lightning strikes every year. The
largest of these occurred in the summer of 2000, when a direct
lightning strike on the tower resulted in the total write-off of the
electrical generating set. (Data provided by ANDORRA
Photo 1. Las Pardinas Telecommunications Tower
2. DATA PROVIDED BY MÉTÉORAGE
The data provided in reports from Météorage (htpp:// www.meteorage.fr. /) was as follows:
• Id: Number of strikes listed in the report.
• Date: date of strike dd/mm/yyyy, time of strike hh/mm/ss in local time (MET) or UTC
(add 1 for the local time in winter) (add 2 for the local time in summer).
• lat. : Latitude of strike in decimal degrees.
• Long .: Longitude of strike in decimal degrees.
• amperage. (Cloud-to-earth): Polarity and peak intensity of the discharge current in kiloamperes (1 kA = 1000 A).
• gd-axe: major axis of the confidence ellipse of the location in km (max)
• pt-axe : minor axis of the confidence ellipse of the location in km (max)
• Inclin .: Slope of the ellipse with respect to North.
• Distance: distance in kilometers between the impact point and the reference city or coordinates used.
• dir. (Azimuth): angular direction of the impact point with respect to geographic North (in degrees clockwise), as
shown from the centre of the analysis
3. SUMMARY OF THE DATA: 2003 - 2014 WITH THE DDCE COMPARED
TO 1997 - 2002 WITH A FRANKLIN ROD
4. CERTIFIED LETTER FROM ANDORRA TELECOM
CONCERNING THE LAS PARDINAS TOWER
5. CONCLUSIONS FROM THE FINDINGS
1. THE PARDINAS Tower is located in an area with a high incidence of lightning strikes (Keraunic level (Nc) 7.7 and lightning density (Nr) 32).
ANDORRA TELECOM certifies that as regards lightning strikes, it is the most problematic telecommunications tower in the Principality of
Andorra (WESTERN PYRENEES).
2. From 1997 to 2002, when a Franklin lightning rod system was installed, there were 21 direct strikes.
3. From 2003 to 2015, with a DDCE100 lightning protection system installed, there were no direct strikes at all (13‐YEAR ANALYSIS).
4. Over the 13 years of the analysis (21/06/2003 – 31/12/2015) 1121 lightning strikes were recorded within a radius
of 2 km from the LAS PARDINAS TOWER, with the following results:
a) ZERO DIRECT STRIKES
b) The nearest strike was 22 KA (negative), located 48.73 meters away (recorded on June 14, 2010 at 14:17:36
c) All other strikes were more than 100 meters away from the LAS PARDINAS TOWER, that is to day, there was
one strike 48.73 m away and 1120 strikes over 100 m away.
d) In terms of distance, the results tell us that 1.33% of strikes occur at distances between 100 m and 300 m of
the LAS PARDINAS TOWER, 2.23% of strikes occur at distances between 300 m and 500 m, 7.58% of strikes
occur at distances between 500 m and 900 m and 88.84% of strikes occur at distances greater than 900 m
e) It has been proven that DDCE compensates the varying electrical field in its immediate surroundings,
preventing ascending streamers from forming. The actual data shows that the risk of lightning strikes
increases as the storm moves away from the point where DDCE is installed, which is logical, given that the
electric field is compensated by the DDCE compensates in its immediate environment and it will increase once
more as the distance from the DDCE increases.
5. Therefore the effectiveness of the DDCE is 100% on direct lightning strikes on the protected structure and 99.99%
on strikes within the area of its 100 m radius of coverage (1 strike at 48.73 m and 1120 strikes at over 100 m from
the tower) in an analysis of 13 years in an area of high lightning incidence (Nc = 7.7 and Nr = 32).
6. The DDCE only affects the electric field which appears in its immediate surroundings. It has NO influence on what
happens in the cloud, or on the number of storms that occur in the area, or how long they last, as is logical.
6. LOCATION OF THE TOWER. AREA OF HIGH INCIDENCE OF LIGHTNING
Variable lightning density Variable annual keraunic level
Maximum: 86, minimum: 8, average 32
Maximum: 11, minimum: 4, average 7.7
STRIKES Days with electrical storms
7. LIGHTNING STRIKE 48.73 m FROM THE LAS PARDINAS TOWER
8. LIGHTNING STRIKE 48.73 m FROM THE LAS PARDINAS TOWER
Photo 2. Lightning strike 48.73
m away from the Las Pardinas
Tower, with DDCE100
protection. There is vegetation in
this area as well as a medium
voltage line, likely to cause
ionization. (Data provided by
9. DATA FOR THE LAS PARDINAS TOWER PROVIDED BY MÉTÉORAGE:
2011 - 2014 WITH DDCE100 (I)
10. DATA FOR THE LAS PARDINAS TOWER PROVIDED BY MÉTÉORAGE:
2011 - 2014 WITH DDCE100 (II)
11. DATA FOR THE LAS PARDINAS TOWER PROVIDED BY MÉTÉORAGE:
2011 - 2014 WITH DDCE100 (III)
12. DATA FOR THE LAS PARDINAS TOWER PROVIDED BY MÉTÉORAGE:
2011 - 2014 WITH DDCE100 (IV)
13. ACTUAL PHOTOS OF LIGHTNING STRIKING NEAR THE LAS
PARDINAS TOWER, WITH THE DDCE100 INSTALLED (I)
14. ACTUAL PHOTOS OF LIGHTNING STRIKING NEAR THE LAS
PARDINAS TOWER, WITH THE DDCE100 INSTALLED (II)
15. ACTUAL PHOTOS OF THE LAS PARDINAS TOWER
16. DATA ANNEXED TO THE 12-YEAR LAS PARDINAS TOWER ANALYSIS
1. MÉTÉROGE data from 2003 - 2010 is attached in PDF format
2. MÉTÉORAGE data from 2010 is attached in PDF format
3. MÉTÉORAGE data from 2011 to 2014 is attached in PDF format
4. MÉTÉROGE data from 2003 - 2010 on Google Earth is attached
5. MÉTÉORAGE data from 2010 on Google Earth is attached
6. MÉTÉORAGE data from 2011 - 2014 on Google Earth is attached
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