Power System Protection: 5 Elementary Concepts you should know about Lightning Arresters

What is lightning arrester

It is a protection device which diverts the surges on a power system to the ground.

It is not an absorber

From name arrester, one might think that it absorbs the surges of light. However, that is not the case. In fact it doesn’t stops or absorbs. It essentially diverts the surges to ground.

It also clamps the voltage.


5 different types exist:

  1. Expulsion type
  2. Horn gap type
  3. Multigap type
  4. Rod gap type
  5. Valve type

SPD, TVSS, and Lightning arrester (LA)

Surge protective devices (SPD) and Transient voltage surge suppressor perform exactly same as the LA, however, they are used below 1000 V., On the other hand, LA is usually employed above the 1 kV.

Working of LA

The video below illustrates the working, internal design construction and practical applications of LA>

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