System Components

 

System Components

A complete lightning protection system (LPS) is typically made up of the following components:

  Air TerminalsAir Terminals Also referred to as lightning rods, these inconspicuous copper or aluminum rods are mounted on the roof at intervals as defined by industry safety standards. The air terminals serve as strike receptors, designed to intercept the lightning strike.
  Conductor CableMain Conductors Constructed of aluminum or copper, these braided cables connect the air terminals to the other system components and the grounds.
  Ground Rod DetailGrounds A minimum of two ground rods, driven at least 10 feet deep in the earth are required for all structures. The ground terminations direct the dangerous current into the ground, to eliminate the chance of injury or damage to the structure. Special grounding requirements are sometimes necessary in shallow, sandy or rocky soil, which are addressed in the industry safety standards for installation.
  BondsBonds Bonding joins metallic bodies (roof components) and grounded building systems to the main conductor to ensure conductivity and prevent side flashing (lightning jumping between two objects).
  Surge SuppressionSurge Arresters / Suppressors A surge is an increase in electrical current due to a lightning strike on or near a power line or utility service. Surge suppression is installed at the electrical panel(s) to prevent the entrance of overvoltages which can cause a fire. Arresters installed at electrical panels help protect heavy appliances and prevent fires at the service panel entrances. Additional devices may be needed to protect other in-house electronics. Surge protection devices are typically installed in conjunction with a lightning protection system by an electrician or the home owner.