Design of earthing and lightning protection systems

Detailed design, engineering and procurement for the Shah Deniz 2 project

Business Time Project Coordinator
Energy Start Date: 2016 Kellogg Brown and Root (KBR)



The development site is large, has a multitude of various metal structures in an exposed location, and areas classified as hot zones where there is a risk of flammable atmosphere ignition.
The protection against touch and step potentials for personnel and lightning protection for the plant, are paramount, so an effective and efficient design is important.
A return on investment study was required to optimise the design and equipment against the risk to life and economic loss.


Our engineering consultants worked closely with the KBR electrical engineering team to develop a detailed design of the earthing system.

  • Earthing assessment and design
  • Site visit to Azerbaijan – soil resistivity testing across the site
  • Inspection and assessment of central control building on existing site
  • Design of in-ground earthing for planned extension
  • Guidance and review of KBR design philosophy for earthing systems
  • Lightning protection
  • Risk assessments of key buildings
  • Level of protection recommendations
  • Design of lightning protection systems
  • Specification of suitable Surge Protection Devices (SPDs).


RINA provided support to the KBR electrical engineering team to design the in-ground earthing system and lightning protection for the extension of the onshore Sangachal Terminal.
Additional guidance has been provided which led to a contract extension for an additional risk assessment which will determine the requirement for SPDs from an economic loss point of view.
As this project is ongoing, some conclusions have been reached, however, more are emerging. The efficient and effective design and implementation of the earthing and lightning protection schemes will provide the protection required and save project cost.
Post-construction surveys will prove the efficacy of the design work that we have carried out for KBR.