Lightning Protectors For Industry Savings
Lightning is one of the primary causes for losses within industries that function with exposed equipment. When combined with the losses as a result of customer frustration with networks availability, and supplies that are intermittent, causing customers to switch to competing firms for services, revenue losses as a result of lightning strikes can easily run into the millions of dollars over time. It is for this reason that savvy companies have turned to preventative measures in order to salvage as much equipment as possible as a result of lightning strikes, with an added benefit being quicker service restoration times. Simply put, by creating situations where lightning strike damage is isolated to the strike points themselves, the downstream equipment repair and replacement costs can be minimized. Through minimization efforts, downtime rates are also reduced leading to greater levels of customer retention and satisfaction. The minimal costs of implementing lightning protectors is offset by the huge savings over time that they produce.
Lightning protection within each industry is going to look different due to the unique setups that are involved in specific equipment for that industry. As an example, we will find that a cellular tower is one of many units in the device chain used by the telecommunications industry. That cell tower exists within an exposed space, generally providing the best target in a region for lightning strikes due to the physical makeup of the tower. They are most always the tallest structures in a region and are unobstructed by other structures in order to provide good signals to users on the ground. They are constructed of materials that conduct electricity so as to provide strength against wind and rain, and they are not shielded in any way so as to allow for signal transfer. At the top of the tower is the “remote radio head” equipment which essentially receives and transmits the necessary signals to users. Near the bottom of the tower is the “base band unit” which processes the signals and transmits them to the network. These two equipment groups are connected through a multitude of wires and cables, as well as being affixed to the same structure, essentially tying these two equipment groups directly together. In the event of single or multiple lightning strikes to the tower near the top, the electrical current produced by the strike overwhelms and damages the equipment that is connected together using the power lines as a transfer path. The only way to salvage at least some of this equipment further down the chain is to provide a gapping mechanism, known as “a lighting protector” which will not allow the flow of electricity past the point of install. The electrical flow will travel unobstructed to that point. The result is a salvaging of equipment beyond that point and an easier restoration of service after the fact. These technologically advanced products produce far more savings over time than the cost of their install, ultimately making lightning protectors a good investment for the cellular industry.