Demonstration of protection against the physical effects of lightning is a requirement for aircraft. This includes protection of fuel tanks and systems to ensure that no ignition hazards can be created by lightning.

Testing to demonstrate protection is often necessary in other fields, including Wind Turbines, Munitions, Telecommunications and Ship-borne systems.


Cobham Abingdon support these requirements by providing comprehensive testing services and consultancy, for validating design and protection of structures, fuel systems and munitions.


A variety of test rigs are available to accommodate different sizes of test panel and aircraft structural/fuel tank components. Many structural assessments can be performed on square panels (typically 500m, or 550mm) or on fuel tank skin/rib/spar interfaces of standard sizes. For larger structural items or parts of flight control surfaces bespoke test rigs and return conductor paths are set up as required.

High Current Testing capabilities


High Current Generator:


Components A, Ah, D, B, C and C* as specified in ED-84/ARP5412 and NATO/Military standards


Fast component (A) up to 3.5MJ/Ω in normal configuration, but up to 10MJ/Ω for meeting IEC standards.


Cobham also have the capability to modify the generator to provide bespoke current waveforms.


Fuels Systems Testing:

Specialist diagnostics used for detection of ignition hazards within fuel tanks by either the photographic method or ignitable mixture test method as defined in ED-105 / ARP5416.

  • Photographic method, a suite of calibrated cameras both digital and film, with remote operation and imaging (digital).
  • Ignitable mixture method, for a variety of different gas mixtures.
  • Transient Hot Spot measurements using our thermal imaging camera.

Other Capabilities include:

  • Exported Transient Voltage Measurements.
  • Current distribution on larger structures, along with current measurements on cable looms and system components.
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