Biral BTD-200 Lightning Detection Sensor

ESS Earth Sciences are proud to be Australian distributors for the Biral range of lightning detection and warning systems.

  • Detects all forms of lighting
  • Detects before the first strike
  • Range of 35km
  • Portable and easy to set up
  • EN50536:2011+/A1:2012 for a Class 1 detector



Biral BTD-200 Lightning Detection Sensor

The BTD-200 lightning detection sensor is able to detect such disturbances in the atmospheric electric field at a distance of 35km (the aviation-grade BTD-300 can detect disturbance at a range of 83km).

The BTD-200 is specifically designed to be portable and ready to use out-of-the-box; ideal for outdoor events such as concerts, golf tournaments, and festivals. The BTD-200 is equally suited for permanent installations such as mines or semi-permanent installations such as seasonal farming activities.

The sensor detections potential lightning before first strike. The bespoke software can then provide an advanced warning through multiple mediums such as SMS, email, siren, and lighting.

Lightning formation

Lightning forms in storm clouds when either a positive or negative electrical charge builds due to the movement of particles. The top of the clouds becomes positively charged and the base of the clouds becomes negatively charged. The negative charge at the base of the cloud repels the negative electrons at the ground, making the area positively charged. During this condition, a lightning strike may occur, during which there will be a negative discharge (positive discharge from the top of the clouds can also occur – see Bolt from the blue article).


Features of the BTD-200 Lightning Detection Sensor:

  • Complete, out-of-the-box warning system – only minimal installation is required.
  • Fully automatic alarm triggering – the alarm can be in the form of a siren, lighting system, SMS text message, or email. A combination of these is possible.
  • Warns of overhead lightning risk before the first lightning strike – the BTD-200 makes quasi electrostatic measurements in the local electric field providing accurate predictions of lighting.
  • Accurately detects lightning to a 35km range – the risk is visually represented in bespoke software.
  • Detects all lighting types: cloud-to-ground, intra-cloud, and cloud-to-cloud lightning.
  • Detects charged precipitation and strong atmospheric electric fields – therefore prediction before the first strike is possible so appropriate safety precautions can be taken in good time.
  • Compliance with EN50536:2011+/A1:2012 for a Class 1 detector
  • Performs in accordance with IEC62793 for a Class A detector


The BTD-200 Lightning Detection Sensor is designed to be modular although as standard the sensor comes with bespoke Lightning Works software which offers the following:

  • Multi-user capability – up to simultaneously.
  • Lightning distance warning zones overlaid over map.
  • Real-time lighting warning state
  • Sensor health display
  • System configuration window
  • Automatic data logging of lightning events

Accessories for lightning detection sensor:

  • Direction finder software – additional software displays the location of individual flashes of lightning.
  • Mounting Pole and Brackets
  • Cables and earth rods

Systems and Communications

  • Standalone integration – connected directly to site warning system using relays. This does not require a Base Control Box.
  • Connected to Computer – Lightning works software (supplied) displays risk zones. Can connect to relays for site warning system.
    A serial to USB converter is supplied for connection to computers.
  • Base Control Box – connect to base control box for full integration.

Electrical Connections

Ground Connection

  • Essential for correct BTD-200 operation
  • Grounding Rod Kits available with 2m, 5m or 10m, of cable

Power Supply

  • 9-30 V DC, Less than 6W
  • Plug-top mains to DC power supply included with BTD-200
  • For length less than 100m, 0.33mm2 (22AWG) cable recommended
  • Terminals accept cable up to 2.08mm2 (14AWG)

Relay Connections

  • Not Intended for Mains Voltage Switching
  • 35 V DC, 16 V AC rms or 26.6 V AC peak
  • 5A Maximum current