I have a problem with my sensor, where can I get help and advice?

If you have a technical problem with your sensor, please complete our enquiry form.

I can't find the user manual for my sensor, can I get another one?

Yes, of course, the manual is available in the ‘our product’ section on this website to download in pdf format (click here).

How many different types of lightning detector does Biral manufacture?

There are three different lightning detection sensors in the Biral range; BTD-200, BTD-300 & BTD-350. The latter two are collectively referred to as BTD-3X0 due to their similarities.
This website is specifically for the BTD-200.

What types of lightning will it detect (and range)?

The BTD-200 has a working range of 35km (22mi).

Can I adjust the warning ranges?

Yes, the BTD-200 has three ranges (Overhead, Vicinity & Distant)

Can I have a Google earth image of my area overlaid with the lightning data?

Yes, a map can be set up in the accompanying Lightning Works software.

Can I distinguish between different types of lightning activity (cloud to cloud / cloud to ground)?

Although the BTD sensors detect these different types of lightning it is not currently possible to differentiate between them. This is a feature that has been requested before and we are currently investigating what can be done to achieve it.

Can I write my own display software?

Yes, of course. If you would like to do this please complete our enquiry form and we can provide you with technical support.

Do I have to use Biral’s BTD software?

Not at all. If you would like to use your own, please complete our enquiry form and we can provide you with technical support.

Can I adjust the ranges in different types of measurement?

Yes, the choices available for distance measurement units are kilometres (km) or statute miles (m).

Can I see the GUI on multiple displays?

Yes, the BTD-200 is designed to have the display software installed on several computers at the same time but with a limit of five concurrent users.

Can I change between Ethernet and RS422 Communications?

Output from the BTD-200 is RS422 only.

What height should I mount the sensor?

There is a general misconception that a lightning detector needs to be mounted high up. Indeed, this is generally not a good solution as it makes the sensor itself more likely to be struck by lightning. For the BTD-200 we recommend it is mounted on top of a 1.5m high pole or on a wall bracket so that the sensor is above the top of the wall. The user manual have a section on choosing a suitable installation site and the obstructions that should be avoided. Assistance is also available from the Biral service department by completing our enquiry form.

Can I use a fixed IP address?

This does not apply to the BTD-200 as its output is always RS422 serial.

The antenna are covered in bird droppings, is this a problem?

Generally, bird droppings or other contamination on the antenna should not affect the operation of the sensor. We do, however, recommend that the antennas are cleaned periodically to prevent deterioration of the surface which could lead to corrosion. The requirements for cleaning the BTD sensors is explained in detail in the user manual which can be downloaded from this website.

How do I calibrate/check the sensor is working?

All Biral BTD sensors have comprehensive in-built self-test and diagnostic feature that report any problems via the output data stream.

How long is the warranty?

Standard warranties are 1 year for the BTD-200. It is possible to purchase extended warranties but only at the time of purchase of the sensor itself.

How do I return the sensor/what do I need to send back?

Firstly, contact our service department to inform us that you need to return the sensor by completing our enquiry form. A service technician will discuss why you think that the sensor needs to be returned and then inform you which parts should be sent back. Once that is done, simply place the sensor in suitable packaging – preferably the box this it was originally delivered in – and send it to:-

For the attention of the Service Department
Unit 8, Harbour Road Trading Estate
BS20 7BL

How do I clean the sensor and how often should it be done?

Gently wipe the antenna and plastic insulator supports using either a mild detergent or pure alcohol (propanol) on a soft cloth to remove any contamination. Appropriate safety precautions must be taken when using pure alcohol. The time interval between cleaning depends on the environment that the sensor is operating in but typically every 6 months should be sufficient. In areas where corrosive contamination is likely the frequency of cleaning should be increased.

My Lightning Works software does not work after installing on multiple PCs

There are many possible reasons why this might happen but the most likely scenario is that you have installed more than one server version of the software, which will cause the software to fail.

I have installed multiple server versions of Lightning Works, how do I correct this?

There can only be one instance of the server software in any installation and that has to be on the computer that the BTD-200 is directly connected to. To remedy this situation, you must first delete all copies of the software except for the one that you intend to use as the server and then re-install copies of the client software where needed. Both the server and client software are on the memory stick supplied with the sensor. To uninstall the software please use the uninstall procedure for the version of Windows running on the computers.