Learn how Lightning Phenomena is Shaping the Wind Power Industry

May 12, 2017

Did you know that WindPower contributed more new electric generating capacity in 2016 than any other source?¹ And did you know that NTS has supported the WindPower industry for 30 years?

NTS will be participating in this year’s AWEA WINDPOWER Conference and Exhibition in Anaheim, CA from May 22-25. Attending from our Pittsfield location is Andy Plumer, world renowned lightning expert, founder, and chief engineer. Joining Andy, will be Justin McKennon, senior engineer and subject matter expert in analytical modeling, and SarahMarie Snow, applications engineer.

Swing by booth #4050 to learn how advanced capabilities in analytical modeling and test services have contributed to the Wind Power industry’s growth and, help Andy, Justin, and SarahMarie celebrate 40 years in the lightning phenomena industry!

Meet the Team

Andy Plumer
Founder and Chief Engineer

Andy is a long-standing participant in the IEC TC-88 PT 24—for the development of wind turbine Lightning Protection standard IEC 61400-24—and his work is well known in the formulation of advanced design and verification methods for the aircraft and wind industries.

Justin McKennon
Senior Engineer

Bringing his M.S.E.E., E.I.T., experience as a systems engineer from General Dynamics, Justin is highly accomplished with having made significant contributions in developing the analytical modeling software COMSOL. He has provided design solutions for several large wind industry programs, is an active participant in the Lightning Direct Effects committee for SAE RTCA DO-160, and helped establish NTS’ FEM and simulation services engineering group.

SarahMarie Snow
Applications Engineer

Possessing a wealth of knowledge—a bachelor’s in Science, certified Technical Writer, and NTS Pittsfield’s Lightning Protection of Aircraft and Avionics courses alumnus—SarahMarie has been mentored for the last 12 years by Andy Plumer and Mike Dargi. She is a dedicated applications engineer, interfacing with customers to help them find solutions for their program needs.

Capabilities and Services

Lightning Protection Design

  • Blades (traditional makeup, CFRP makeup, Anti-ice/De-Ice technology, Electronic Systems, Control devices)
  • Control Electronics
  • Power Distribution
  • Structural Components (Hub, Spinner, Nacelle, Mechanical Drive Train and Yaw Control System, Tower Installation, Grounding and Equipotential Bonding)
  • Numerical Simulation Services
    • Blades with Candidate Protection Designs using COMSOL Multiphysics
    • Blade, Hub, Nacelle, Tower and Earthing Installations to predict responses to lightning strikes and performance of protection designs
    • Evaluation for protection devices (SPD, TVS, Shielding, etc.)
  • Lightning Exposure assessments (Zoning, LPZ, per IEC 61400-24)
  • Damage Risk Assessments (On- or off-site turbine inspections for incident investigation)
  • Retrofit Design services

Protection Verification Services

  • Certification Test Planning and documentation
  • Annex D of IEC 61400-24
    • High Voltage Strike Attachment testing
    • High Current Physical Damage testing
Learn More

About NTS Pittsfield

NTS Pittsfield, formerly Lightning Technologies, Inc. (LTI), is home to one of the most complete lightning-simulation laboratories in the world and ranks as an international leader in the development of sophisticated lightning protection systems for customers in the aerospace industry as well as for industrial complexes, golf courses, wind turbine farms, theme parks and other high-risk locations. NTS Pittsfield operates from an 18,000 sq ft facility which includes 14 foot and 25 foot tall generators.

NTS Pittsfield has provided lightning protection design and validation for major aircraft and space vehicles and launch facilities including NASA Space Shuttle and KSC launch complexes. Additional clients include: GE, FAA, Hamilton Sundstrand, NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, Walt Disney World’s Epcot Center, Typhoon Lagoon, and Animal Kingdom parks.

Facility Highlights

  • Design and analysis of systems and subsystems to determine the optimum protection
  • Design and testing of systems and subsystems against international standards for lightning protection
  • Consultation on lightning protection design projects as well as for lightning related problem solving, incident/accident investigations and analysis.
Learn More


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