Browse Publications Technical Papers 2001-01-2898

Electrical Strength of Ultra-Long Air Gaps 2001-01-2898

Some experimental results on discharge development in ultra-long air gaps (breakdown voltages, parameters of the leader stage) are presented. The obtained data are compared to available data on breakdown of long air gaps under positive switching pulses with critical time-to-crest. Existing empirical and theoretical formulae for calculation of sparkover voltage of rod-to-plane air gaps are reviewed. Electrical strength of ultra-long air gaps is considered based on general analysis of physical processes in leader stage of spark discharge. The electrical strength has been thus expressed in the given paper via some characteristic stabilization electric field for each spatial scale. As predicted here, the electrical strength along the lightning development path may decrease down to 3÷10 kV/m.


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