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Boltek Storm Tracker Lightning Detector
Storm Tracker uses a direction-finding antenna to receive and locate the
radio signals produced by lightning. The output from the antenna is fed into
a PCI card receiver and depending on the strength of the received signal a
calculation is then made by the software to determine approximately how far
the strike is away.
The combination of direction and distance allows the strike to be plotted
onto a radar-like screen. The receiver location being at the center of the
screen with distance increasing outwards from the center.
Depending upon the height of the antenna it is possible to detect lightning
strikes up to 300 miles away. Exceptionally fierce storms could push this
distance up to 350 miles.
Software from Astrogenic provides the screen data and enables the viewer to
see additional information such as the path and intensity of the storm.
Basically there are 4 different types of lightning strikes these are :-
1. Cloud to ground (-ve)
2. Cloud to ground (+ve)
3. Inter cloud (-ve)
4. Inter cloud (+ve)
Note. The most dangerous type of lightning is No.2 Cloud to ground (+ve)
My own antenna is in the loft and is mounted approximately 10 inches below
the ridge tiles at a height of 25feet. Care has been taken to ensure that
the front of the antenna corresponds to the top of the computer screen. If
the antenna does not face North the top of the screen will not be North.
The green + seen on the map at the center of the rings is the location of my
station, this has been determined by adding my latitude and longitude to the
map. The exact coordinates of which are:-
Lat 51.34.11N and Lon 000.16.11E
The equipment was obtained from www.meteorologica.co.uk who provided me with
an excellent service. My thanks also go out to Relko at www.astrogenic.com
for his software support.