Lightning Data in Action WSI Lightning Data Products and Services
WSI’s aviation clients proactively manage
critical weather events including local
and global lightning, improving
operations and reducing costs on an
ongoing basis. Lightning contributes
essential information to the WSI suite of United States Precision Lightning Network
aviation products and services, including
pilot briefing, operations management,
North American Precision Lightning Network
and ramp alerting/personnel safety.
Complete stroke data ensures every event
detected that might affect lives or Global Lightning Network
equipment is captured and made
WSI offers our lightning-sensitive clients the highest quality and accuracy products and
services from lightning detection networks spanning the globe. WSI is pleased to count
Flight operations in WSI Fusion™ facilitated by current weather conditions including global among its customers many of the leading organizations in the media, aviation, energy/
infrared satellite imagery and real-time lightning from the Global Lightning Network.
utility, government and consumer markets. In addition, WSI reaches thousands of end
users through our high-visibility Lightning Value-Added Reseller partners. Our custom-
Lightning data plays an important role for energy, ers and resellers have thoroughly evaluated the capabilities of the market offerings,
renewable resources, and utility customers who performing extensive due-diligence and objective comparisons before selecting WSI’s
need to balance asset utilization, safety, and
lightning data to meet their business critical requirements.
operational efficiency. Real-time lightning is a vital
part of making life- and cost-saving decisions,
decreasing outages and increasing response time.
Forensic data helps optimize resource planning and The United States Precision Lightning Network ™, USPLN™, is an advanced lightning
equipment failure analyses. stroke detection network that has been providing real-time and archive lightning data
covering the continental United States since its inception in 2004.
Analysis of historical lightning-active
areas assists with resource planning The USPLN was created in response to customer demand for an alternative lightning detection solu-
and implementation. tion. From the start, the objectives of the network were to provide the highest level of accuracy and
efficiency for operational and consumer needs, while ensuring this critical information could be ob-
tained at a lower price point. The end result has exceeded these goals, revolutionizing the lightning
WSI helps clients deliver
As the needs of our customers have grown, so have WSI’s lightning capabilities. With the
outstanding on-air, online, and availability of the North American Precision Lightning NetworkSM (NAPLNSM), WSI brings
mobile content with the types of Current lightning
data enhances the
the same high quality lightning information to customers with international interests.
immediate information that touch
weather story in WSI
lives every day. Media and
TruVu Titan™, a
The NAPLN builds upon the success of the USPLN by incorporating additional sensors in Canada,
interactive products containing real- powerful interactive Mexico, Central America, the Caribbean and northern South America. While the USPLN does provide
time lightning inform and notify with tool for presenting
compelling clarity, visual impact, coverage beyond the continental US borders, the combined total of 150 sensors in the NAPLN ensures
and urgency. The timeliness and disruptive weather the highest levels of accuracy and efficiency in these newly expanded areas. This increased geographic
accuracy of lightning data ensure information. and market reach means customers can get lightning wherever their businesses take them.
WSI’s tools, information and images
tell the disruptive weather story our
Broad Coverage • Fast Flexible Delivery • Complete Stroke Data • WSI Reliability • Adaptable Business Terms
Visit www.uspln.com or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org / 978-983-6648
USPLN and United States Precision Lightning Network are trademarks of TOA Systems, Inc.
NAPLN and North American Precision Lightning Network are service marks and
GLN and Global Lightning Network are registered trademarks of WSI Corporation.
The Global Lightning Network® (GLN®) is
Lightning Network Technology
comprised of TOA Precision Lightning Sensors Partnership Protecting People and Property with
The USPLN, NAPLN, and GLN are a partnership of WSI Corporation, a leader in state-of-the-art weather-driven Lifesaving Lightning Detection
strategically located at hosting sites throughout the world.
business solutions, and TOA Systems, Inc., a preeminent manufacturer of integrated lightning detection and WSI has developed important global
warning systems. TOA Systems lightning location technology is proven in operational systems throughout the Lightning data and services from the GLN support critical
partnerships with organizations such as the
globe. business requirements in global locations where lightning has Centre of Excellence on Lightning Protection
These full stroke detection networks are exclusively based upon TOA Systems Precision Light- Time-of-Arrival vs. significant economic and safety consequences. For instance, (CELP) at Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM),
ning Sensors™, which utilize time-of-arrival (TOA) technology (see side bar). Each sensor Magnetic Direction Finding international resort facilities, mining operations and offshore placing lightning sensors in Malaysia,
system consists of a GPS receiver antenna, stroke antenna, and sensor receiver chassis. Data The Precision Lightning Sensors in the drilling sites in key deployment areas rely upon the Bangladesh and other Southeast Asia countries to
from the sensors is relayed by internet to primary and backup processing centers in Andover WSI networks have very liberal siting significantly improve lightning efforts in these areas.
capabilities of the GLN as part of their personnel and
MA and Melbourne FL to ensure full redundancy of information. criteria as they do not monitor WSI worked with Dr. Mohd Zainal Abidin Ab Kadir,
equipment safety management practices. chairman of the Centre of Excellence on Lightning
In a time-of-arrival based system, timing is a critical part of the receiver. The lightning re- magnetic field signals. The TOA
The sensitivity of the TOA sensors also means lightning can Protection, and professor at UPM’s Department of
ceiver uses commercial GPS timing as a reference and the sensor users a high frequency technology is unaffected by buried or Electrical and Electronics Engineering, to help grow
source that makes the timing more stable, accurate and increases the resolution. Timing is overhead power lines and other be captured from great distances, allowing the Global the GLN in this area. Dr. Kadir is a world-renowned
constantly monitored and corrected, resulting in more accurate lightning locations. sources of electromagnetic field Lightning Network to provide awareness of lightning activity expert in lightning safety and protection.
The TOA Precision Lightning Sensor includes broadband receiver capabilities to detect a anomalies which can make site across expanses of land and water. WSI’s aviation clients “Malaysia and Bangladesh are among the countries
substantial amount of lightning energy and allow the system to distinguish between cloud-to- selection and preparation very costly with global routes utilize data from the GLN as part of their with the highest lightning densities in the world,”
ground strokes (CG) and cloud (CL) lightning events. Due to very high sensitivity, the sensor and can degrade signal quality. enhanced weather information to enable better decision- stated Dr. Kadir, “and through this collaboration, I
can easily differentiate CL signatures; however, the comparatively weaker peak voltages re- believe this will help in improving the research and
making both en route and on the ground.
ceived at the antenna and the ef- knowledge dissemination to the public. It is a
fects of propagation delays over WSI began deployment of the Global Lightning Network in tremendous effort from WSI and UPM/CELP”.
longer distances cause CL signal 2007 to meet the demands of
strength thresholds to be lower
than for CG strokes. Providing
our customers with interests
some CL data improves the overall CG stroke outside of North America.
picture of storm activity and allows is greater than 95%
enhanced analysis of storm devel- for all of the The coverage of the Global
opment and decay. continental United Lightning Network continues
States to increase as additional
USPLN detection efficiency is at sensors are deployed and
least 95% for CG strokes and be- the technology is enhanced
tween 10-15% for CL events. CG to ensure the highest
stroke and CL location accuracy detection efficiency and
location accuracy. In many
are better than 250 m throughout
areas, GLN performance is
most of North America. greater than 80% detection
efficiency and 1 km mean
Overview of Lightning Data Products How Fast is Fast?
Lightning data products from WSI provide a variety of capabilities and address diverse user and market requirements. Real-time streaming lightning stroke data from each of the networks can be available for internet delivery in as soon as 15
seconds from detection. Upon receipt of detections from the sensors, the central processing servers wait for a short amount of
Parameter Definition Options Details time to ensure maximum redundancy and information quality prior to computing or rejecting a solution. The database stores
Latency Time delay from Real-time (<=1 minute) Alerting, safety the sensors’ detection time and the time of the solution calculation, the difference in which normally ranges from 11 to 20
detection of strokes to Near real-time (1-5 minutes) Operations, awareness seconds. Data is then disseminated to users based on communication architecture (IP, satellite).
user availability of data Delayed (15 minutes, 24 hours) Meteorology, storm tracking
Archived (>24 hours) Claims, forensics, planning, R&D The data in the table below compares the time the event was detected according to the sensors, the time the solution was
Coverage Area for which lightning Small (1mi x 1mi) to large Any available for a client to receive, the time a database process at WSI ingested the data for display to external clients, and the
data is received in (global); any geo-political area difference between detection time and ingest/display time (mean time of thousands of records was <28 seconds).
square mi/km, usually such as zip/postal code, county,
in a rectangular shape state/province, country, continent Client Available Client Ingest/
Stroke Time (UTC) Time Display Time Difference (Sec) Latitude Longitude
Delivery and Data communication Binary stream - Internet, satellite Minimum latency, socket connection
Format protocol and file CSV / TXT / XML* - Internet Easily read and integrated, HTTP, FTP, LDM 12:37:52.0 12:38:11.0 12:38:20.5 0:00:28 35.823 -94.0431
arrangement SHP / KML* - Internet Map-software specific uses, HTTP, FTP, LDM 12:37:52.0 12:38:11.0 12:38:20.5 0:00:28 12.6502 -82.9698
Image / documents* - Internet Summary and verification reports, e-mail, HTTP
*some built-in latency 12:37:52.0 12:38:11.0 12:38:20.5 0:00:28 35.8204 -94.0349
12:37:53.0 12:38:11.0 12:38:20.5 0:00:27 14.5061 -95.4166
Licensing Usage and distribution Single User One user on one computer
Single- or Multi-Workstation Site Multi-user, one or multiple workstations per facility 12:37:53.0 12:38:11.0 12:38:20.5 0:00:27 14.4927 -95.4241
Enterprise Unlimited users within the organization 12:37:53.0 12:38:11.0 12:38:20.5 0:00:27 25.9046 77.6694