LINET measures the electromagnetic radiation emitted by lightning strokes by highly sensitive lightning sensors set up at a distance of app. 150 bis 250 km. As the electromagnetic radiation spreads almost at the speed of light, it reaches the sensors at slightly varying times. Even though this difference is a matter of mere microseconds (µs), it enables precisely calculating the location where the lightning stroke originates. To this end all data recorded by each lightning sensor is transmitted to a central server via the internet. The server then calculates the exact geographical position for all the lightning strokes measured (the so-called “location”) and stores them in a database. The results are then made available to the customer in real time. This measurement method is also referred to as the Time-of-Arrival (TOA) method.
LINET, however, does not only measure the position of the lightning stroke. LINET also captures the strength and polarity of the lightning strokes, and the height of intra-cloud strokes, in particular, expanding the lightning information to include a third dimension. This feature is unique around the world for low-frequency networks (VLF/LF) used for large areas.
The lightning strokes detected are instantly made available to business customers as data packages of numerical lightning information (LINET data) or smart visualization (LINET view).
LINET systems essentially comprises two modules: several lightning sensors and a central server. The lightning sensors consist of one magnetic field antenna, a GPS module and a field processors and are set up at distance of app. 150 to 250 km (recommended). The position of the LINET Field Processor is of little importance as long as a sufficiently fast and stable internet connection is available. A secondary server can be optionally installed. The redundant number of sensors constitutes a great advantage given that only the best signals will be included in the calculation. If an individual sensor does not work it is of no consequence to the overall quality of the lightning detection system.
A LINET sensor is quick and easy to set up and will be fully operational if power (at least 30W) and a stable internet connection are available.
Within a regular LINET lightning detection network lightning strokes are located with a statistical accuracy of better than 75 meters (mean value, low scattering). The precise measurements result in accurate, true-to-nature representations of the actual storm situation and almost completely rule out misdetections. The quality is ensured by comparing the LINET data with selected cloud-to-ground strokes to towers of a known geographical position. With this location accuracy, LINET is the quality leader among commercial lightning detection networks.