Conductor Sensor Technology


Validation of new sensor technology designed to detect failures in wind turbine lightning conductors without the need to inspect the turbine blades in the field. The operating principle involves continual monitoring of the load passing through the three individual lightning conductors during operation in order to compare their output. If one conductor’s characteristics change relative to the other two, this may indicate a failure in that blade’s lightning conductor. Currently, there is no product on the market capable of both measuring low electrical output during normal operation and surviving the kind of major discharge that occurs during a lightning strike. If this idea is successful, it will become possible to repair defective lightning conductors as soon as a sensor detects a defect, rather than waiting for a wind turbine to be struck by lightning and repairing the associated damage.

Solution idea

DTU, the Technical University of Denmark, has a Vestas V52 wind turbine available for testing. Jomitek will be able to test their sensor in the same environment where it will later be used. Because this turbine is already used for research projects, a measurement system capable of describing meteorological parameters, including wind speed, temperature, precipitation, and humidity, is already in place. Similarly, the turbine is equipped with sensors that report on the turbine’s operation. Jomitel’s sensor will be installed in the turbine and measurements of the electricity in a lightning conductor will be taken during normal operation.

These measurements can be correlated with meteorological data from the turbine’s measurement system, or taken alone to evaluate the principle behind Jomitek’s lightning conductor sensor.

The project will consist of four phases:

1) Sensor development: A prototype lightning sensor will be prepared for installation in a wind turbine.
2) Sensor installation: Sensoren monteres i DTU’s Vestas V52 turbine at the Risø test site.
3) Testing period / sensor validation: Measurement data will be collected for ongoing analysis.
4) Conclusion of testing: The sensor’s functionality will be evaluated based on the testing conducted.

Problem solvers

  • Jomitek Aps
  • Stiesdal A/S
  • Ørsted
  • DTU Wind Energy


Start: April 2020
End: December 2020
Grant: DKK 100.000

Contact person

Lene Vest Munk Thomsen

Lene Vest Munk Thomsen
Project Manager
Tlf: +45 3152 3072