Sferics receiver

From Glossary of Meteorology

sferics receiver

(Also called lightning direction finder.) An instrument that measures, electronically, the direction of arrival, intensity, and rate of occurrence of atmospherics; a type of radio direction finder, it is most commonly used to detect and locate cloud-to-ground lightning discharges from distant thunderstorms.

In its simplest form the instrument consists of two orthogonally crossed antennas that measure the electromagnetic field changes produced by a lightning discharge and determine the direction from which the changes arrived. Negative and positive polarity cloud-to-ground discharges can be distinguished. Cloud-to-cloud discharges can be distinguished based on characteristics of the received signal, and the geometry of nearby discharge channels may be determined.
See also narrow- sector recorder, lightning detection network.