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SESShield-3D is a software package dedicated to the analysis and design of systems for shielding against lightning strikes in complex 3D environments.

Included Software Tools


Technical Description

SESShield-3D is a powerful software package for the analysis and design of lightning shielding protection systems in complex 3D environments, including substations, power plants, industrial plants and other such installations, accounting for the presence of power lines, equipment, and buildings. SESShield-3D allows arbitrary metallic structures to act as shielding systems, including not only shield wires and masts, but also other structures that attract lightning.

SESShield-3D offers a simple and intuitive graphical user interface that can be used to carry out a complete lightning shielding analysis for a system of freely positioned objects having various geometrical shapes, such as: catenaries, cylinders, cones, cubes and other prisms. Furthermore, calculations are extremely rapid and provide clear, interactive, 3D graphical feedback, so that a shielding system can be designed quickly and efficiently.

Rendering of an Electric Substation

SESShield-3D Capabilities

SESShield-3D can be used to analyze and design a lightning shielding system for the protection of vulnerable systems of arbitrary geometries. It can also assess the probability of failure of a lightning protection system, accounting for the statistical distribution of lightning in the area of the system to be protected.

Lightning Shielding Methods

SESShield-3D supports five Shielding System Positioning Methods (SSPM). These methods, described in IEEE[1] and IEC[2] standards, include:

  • Electrogeometric Model (commonly implemented as the Rolling Sphere Method)
  • Protection Angle Method
  • Eriksson Electrogeometric Model
  • Mesh Method
  • Collection Volume Method

A shielding failure analysis option is also available to determine the rate of shielding failure based on lightning data specified by the user.


The program uses an object-oriented approach to describe the geometry that allows you to select, copy, paste and delete the objects.

  • Geometries created with SESCAD (which can import DXF files) can be saved as a MALT, MALZ or HIFREQ session file. An SESShield-3D system can be converted into a format readable by MALT, or imported into MALZ or HIFREQ and editable with SESCAD.
  • Adjustments can be made to the shielding system on the fly, and the effectiveness of the modifications can be immediately assessed.
  • Dimensions of all components in the studied system are accounted for, including those that are below grade.
  • Alerts the user of unprotected zones.
  • Fully constructed objects can be inserted into the analyzed system, and your own objects can be stored for future use.
  • Several rendering modes are available for analyzing results.

The following figures illustrate four of the shielding methods that can be used with SESShield-3D:

Rolling Sphere Method

Protection Angle Method

Eriksson Electrogeometric Method

Mesh Method

Formal Risk Assessments (in Accordance with IEC 62305-2)

SESShield-3D is the ideal software tool to model arbitrary complex 3D systems, design their lightning shielding systems using industry-accepted methods, and to perform shielding failure analyses. However, this software package cannot be used to conduct formal risk assessments in accordance with procedures described in IEC 62305-2. Such risk assessments can be carried out with either the SESShield application or with the more advanced SESShield-2D software package.

SESShield Pro

SESShield Pro is a software package that includes both SESShield-2D and SESShield-3D, and thus is the optimal solution for risk assessments and for analyzing and designing lightning shielding systems.

[1] IEEE Std-998 - IEEE Guide for Direct Lightning Stroke Shielding of Substations
     IEEE Std-1243 - IEEE Guide for Improving the Lightning Performance of Transmission Lines
[2] IEC Std-62305-1 Ed. 2.0 - Protection Against Lightning