Components of Lightning Strike Protection for Aircraft

lightning strike aircraft

Lightning strikes are a serious concern for aircraft. Proper precautions need to be taken to avoid damage to the aircraft and to the lives of people. Lightning strikes cause arcing at contact points, reducing the life of electrical components. They also cause loss of data and failure to receive vital information during flight.

There are three methods that can be used to ensure that an aircraft is properly protected from lightning strike damages: capacitor filtering, diode suppression and shielding. When proper precautions are taken, lightning strike damages can be greatly diminished or avoided completely.

Capacitor Filtering

Capacitor filters are electronic filters used to remove unwanted or undesired frequencies from a signal. Installing these devices in aircraft can reduce interference and loss of data caused by lightning strikes. In addition, they protect the aircraft’s electrical system from failure due to a spike in electrical current from lightning.

These devices can be installed at several different locations throughout the aircraft to ensure maximum protection from lightning strikes. Combined with other protective measures, these devices are a cost-efficient way to offer significant protection against lightning strikes.

Diode Suppression

Diode suppression is can be used to protect electronics from voltage spikes induced on connected wires. Diode suppression limits voltage spikes. These devices are installed within the aircraft and comply with industry standard requirements to protect the aircraft.

It is important to choose the proper diode for each aircraft. When combined with other options available for lightning strike protection, diodes are effective components in protecting aircraft from lightning strike damage.


Electronic components can be shielded to avoid damage caused by lightning strikes. There are a variety of solutions available. With proper shielding, the chance of damage from an electrical strike can be greatly minimized.

While shielding electronics is very effective in protecting an aircraft from lightning strikes, shielding should not be the only solution used to protect against lightning strike damage. A combination of all three elements in one package can ensure the greatest protection possible.

Lightning Strike Protection Materials from Dexmet

MicroGrid® precision expanded metal foils from Dexmet are the materials of choice for lightning strike protection in composite and carbon-fiber aircraft.

Dexmet is the exclusive supplier for Boeing, the principle supplier for Embraer, and a preferred vendor to a majority of aircraft manufactures around the world. Aircraft manufacturers are quickly realizing the benefits of using Dexmet’s advanced expanded materials instead of the outdated technology of woven wire. To learn more about our lightning strike protection materials and services please call 800-714-8736 or email

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