The Lightning Tests Laboratory (LSWA) called to act in 1992, was the first research and technical centre of this type established in Poland. LSWA operates within the organizational structures of IPP&LM, and its staff consists of scientific, research and technical employees with many years of professional experience, including the generation of high-current, transient electrical discharges and broadband recording of electrical impulses.
The first commercial order carried out by LSWA was a comprehensive study of the immunity of the W-3A Sokół helicopter to the effects of a simulated lightning discharge.
Over the course of nearly a quarter of a century, seven other types of aircraft have been subjected to a similar, comprehensive and fragmentary studies. Over time, the LSWA offer has been expanded to include testing of devices and systems outside the broadly understood aviation industry. In this regard, the more and more common immunity tests of photovoltaic installations deserve special attention, during which the correct operation of the surge arresters used in them are checked.
LSWA research and measurement infrastructure
LSWA has an internal research and measurement space with an area of over 1000 square meters, located in the main laboratory hall of IPP&LM. Thanks to the crane with a lifting capacity of 5 T installed in this space, it is possible to directly lift and move large, separated elements of aircrafts delivered for testing.
The internal research and measurement space is usually used to study the effects of the direct impact of a simulated lightning discharge on flying objects. In the case of small cubature flying objects (air taxis, drones), it can also be a site for indirect effect studies and immunity tests.
Indirect effect studies and immunity tests for larger aircraft are usually carried out in the IPP&LM inner courtyard, in which a temporary, external test and measurement space can be arranged.
Immunity tests of electronic devices or systems – not part of the aircraft, are always carried out in the internal test and measurement space.
The LSWA research and measurement base includes, among others:
- Generators of four components of a simulated lightning discharge. The peak voltage and current of the A-type component generator reach 50 kV/200 kA, respectively;
- Specialized generators 8/20 and 10/350 type for testing surge protection devices (used in power networks and photovoltaic installations) during loads caused by a simulated lightning discharge;
- Transient current surge generators working in an arrangement resulting from specific customer requirements;
- Mobile, broadband disturbance generators that enable carrying out immunity tests (also at the customer’s premises;
- Stationary and mobile Faraday cages;
- Broadband digital oscilloscopes;
- High voltage and current probes, matched high voltage dividers and high current shunts.
The LSWA service portfolio includes:
- Conducting a test procedure to determine the immunity of various types of objects (including aircraft) to the loads caused by simulated lightning. As part of this procedure, direct and indirect tests as well as immunity tests are carried out. Basically, the subsequent stages of the tests are carried out at the premises of LSWA, but if necessary (and if possible) indirect tests and immunity tests may be carried out at the customer’s premises;
- Tests of surge arresters used in photovoltaic installations – in accordance with the requirements of PN-EN 61643-31: 2019;
- Examining the response of electronic devices to loads caused by high-current, transient electrical discharges, the time course and peak currents of which are determined on the basis of specific customer requirements;
- Control of the correct operation of the equipment provided by the customer in the field of high electromagnetic interference.
The LSWA research team always makes every effort to ensure that the services offered are precisely tailored to the needs of customers, and our motto is the transparency of research procedures as well as flexibility and reliability.
Lightning Tests Laboratory
- +48 22 638 10 05 ext. 14