Numerical and Experimental Validation of Electromagnetic Time Reversal for Geolocation of Lightning Strikes

We implement an electromagnetic time reversal technique (EMTR) to locate lightning return strokes. The two-dimensional finite difference time domain is employed to simulate the EMTR process in both, the forward-time and the backward-time phases. Scatterers are included in the computational domain to emulate the presence of objects. Three possible criteria to find the optimum time slice of the EMTR process that includes the maximum peak field, maximum peak energy, and last local minimum of entropy are tested and it is found that only the entropy criterion can successfully locate the lightning discharge. Our analysis shows that the EMTR process in both, using an unchanged and a simplified medium for the backward time works reasonably well even with only two sensors. Furthermore, we validated the proposed method via experimental results using waveforms recorded at two sensors at distances of 14.7 and 380 km from the Säntis Tower. The results demonstrate that the EMTR back-propagation process leads to a refocusing of the radiated energy at the location of the Säntis Tower. The ambiguity in the obtained location when only two sensors are used can be resolved either by using an additional sensor or through a more accurate modeling of the terrain.

Published in:
IEEE Transactions on Electromagnetic Compatibility, 62, 5, 2156-2163
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 Record created 2020-10-14, last modified 2020-10-26

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