Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Grzybowski, Stanislaw

Committee Member

Ginn, L. Herbert

Committee Member

Younan, H. Nicholas

Committee Member

Fu, Yong

Date of Degree


Document Type

Dissertation - Open Access


Electrical Engineering

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D)


James Worth Bagley College of Engineering


Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering


This research is devoted to an investigation on the attractive width of high voltage transmission lines to lightning strikes. In order to design the optimal lightning protection, the estimated number of lightning flashes on the line, which is based on its attractive width, needs to be determined. The investigation was performed using experiments with model tests at the Mississippi State University High Voltage Laboratory. For laboratory experiments, a total of 2,100 negative and positive switching impulse voltages were applied to transmission line models from a conducting rod, which represented a lightning downward leader. Different tested models of transmission lines on a scale of 1:100 were used. The effects of overhead ground wires, phase conductors, tower structures, and the magnitude and polarity of lightning strokes were also studied. The attractive width increased gradually with the height of overhead ground wires and towers as well as the magnitude of the lightning stroke current. Impulse polarity had an impact on the attractive width, and the attractive width for negative polarity was larger than that for positive polarity. The taller tower had more effect on flash distribution to transmission lines than the shorter one. The experimental results agree with the actual transmission line observations published in literature. The new expressions for the attractive width of transmission lines, based on the experimental results, were established. The accurate estimation of the attractive width can help electric power utilities plan transmission systems reliably and economically. The detailed description of the background problem, proposed method, experimental results, and analysis are presented in this dissertation.