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Andrew John Eriksson

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Biography

Dr. Andrew J. Eriksson has made fundamental contributions to the calculation of transmission line lightning reliability. His participation on IEEE, IEC and International Council on Large Electric Systems (CIGRE) standards working groups for lightning reliability, resulted in many indispensable works, such as IEEE Standard 1243-1997: IEEE Design Guide for Improving the Lightning Performance of Transmission Lines. Dr. Eriksson’s research helped clarify the parameters and striking processes of the ground flash as an engineering event, and he did seminal work on equations and experimental data now used worldwide by the electric power industry.

From 1969 to 1985, Dr. Eriksson worked at South Africa’s National Electrical Engineering Laboratories (NEERI), becoming senior chief research officer and finally assistant director. He also worked as an Honorary professor at the University of Witwatersrand and at Eriksson & Pretorius Inc., both in South Africa, in the early 1980s. In 1986, Dr. Eriksson moved to Zurich, Switzerland to join ABB; where he spent four years as president for worldwide operations in medium-voltage switchgear before being appointed executive vice president and member of the ABB Group executive committee in 2001. He retired from ABB in 2002 and is now an independent director and member of the board of The Performance Group, Oslo, Norway.

Dr. Eriksson’s most notable efforts include his 1978 research on lightning in relation to tall structures, and his contributions to equations correlating ground flash density with the number of thunderstorm days and estimating the number of flashes to transmission lines. In the late 1980s he addressed the shielding of transmission lines by overhead ground wires and advanced the lightning insulation coordination of substations, including a groundbreaking 765-V gas-insulated station.

Andrew J. Eriksson was born on 25 April 1946, in Arusha, Tanzania. Raised in South Africa, he studied electrical engineering at the University of Natal, Durban, and received a master of science in 1969 and a doctorate in 1979.

Dr. Eriksson is a Fellow of the IEEE, the Institution of Electrical Engineers and the South African Institute of Electrical Engineers. A Member of the Institute of Directors and an Honorary Member of CIGRE, he served as chairman of the CIGRE study committee on power system insulation coordination. He has published more than 40 papers and holds a patent as the co-inventor of a commercial lightning warning system.