A Lightning Rod is a device which converts the power of lightning into usable EU. One lightning bolt will instantly be converted to 25,000,000 EU expelled at 8192 EU/t. The only way to be able to harness this vast amount of energy is with the help of 4 HV Transformers placed on the sides of the Lightning Rod.
The Lightning Rod gets power when lightning strikes it. The higher the Iron Fences structure reaches, the more likely it has a chance to be struck with a lightning. Only the length of the lightning rod affects the probability of a strike. Building a lightning rod “net” will not make it more likely for a power generating bolt to strike. The Gregtech mod only takes into account the iron fence blocks above the Lightning Rod block. Source Code Snippit.
Lightning rod block emits EU from its sides at the rate of 8192 EU per tick. Out of all the machines, only the Matter Fabricator and the Fusion Reactor can receive power directly from it. For others, HV Transformers should be used.
The lightning rod has an internal storage of 25,000,000 EU. Each bolt of lightning that hits it will fill it completely. If there is a storm, and it gets hit multiple times, it will only store a max of 25,000,000 EU, so if you can't drain it fast enough, you lose the additional EU generated by subsequent strikes as it can only hold what its internal storage allows.
The Lightning Rod could be a very efficient way of gaining energy for mystcraft ages. Setting the age to be always stormy, would generate a lot of EU. The Mindcrack modpack however doesn't have Mystcraft, and the Direwolf20 modpack doesn't have Gregtech although you could add mystcraft/gregtech manually or switch to the Ultimate pack.
Many resources are need in the construction of a lightning rod, this is just one of many ways:
Read across top row of tables for how to make items, down the column for how to make top item.
Note: 1 Highly Advanced Machine block, 4 Energy Flow Circuits, 2 Lapotronic Energy orbs, 2 superconductors are used to make the super condensator.
8 Energy Flow Circuits Edit
|8 Elite Circuit Board*||8 Lapotron Crystal*||(*Assembling Machine)|
|8 Platinum Plates*
8 Advanced Circuits*
16 Electronic Circuits
48 Lapis Lazuli
|8 Electronic Circuits
16 Lapis Lazuli
8 Platinum Ingots*
16 Refined Iron
|(*Plate bending Machine)|
8 Refined Iron
8 Ferrous Ore
8 Mercury Cells
2 Superconductors Edit
|3 60k Helium Coolant Cells||2 Tungsten Plates||1 Iridium Plate||3 Energy Flow Circuits|
|3 Helium Cell
12 Tin Ingots
|2 Tungsten Ingot*||Iridium Alloy Ingot^
8 Industrial TNT^
|3 Platinum Plates
3 Advanced Circuits 3 Sapphires 6 Electronic Circuits
18 Lapis Lazuli
|(*Plate Bending Machine)
|48 Glowstone*||2 Tungsten Dust^||4 Iridium
4 Advanced Alloys**
|3 Electronic Circuits
6 Lapis Lazuli
3 Platinum Ingots* 18 Copper 36 Rubber
6 Refined Iron
(^Industrial Blast Furnace 2500k)
|36 Iridium nuggets||9 Copper
3 Refined Iron
3 Ferrous Ore
3 Mercury Cells
|36 Platinum Dust*||(*Industrial Centrifuge)|
|36 Ferrous Ore*
36 Mercury Cells*
2 Lapotronic Energy Orb Edit
|16 Lapotron Crystals||2 Iridium Plates|
|96 Lapis Luzuli
16 Energy Crystals
32 Electronic Circuits
|2 Iridium Alloy Ingot^
16 Industrial TNT^
48 Refined Iron
8 Advanced Alloys**
2 Diamond Dust**
|72 Iridium nuggets|
|72 Platinum Dust*||(*Industrial Centrifuge)|
|72 Ferrous Ore*
72 Mercury Cells*
5 Highly Advanced machine Block Edit
|20 Chrome Plates*||20 Titanium Plates*||5 Advanced Machine Block||(*Plate Bending Machine)|
|20 Chrome Dust*||20 Titanium Dust*||40 Refined Iron
10 Advanced Alloys
|(*Industrial Blast Furnace)|
|180 Ruby Dust*||80 Tiny pile of Titanium Dust||(*Industrial Electrolyzer)|
|480 Bauxite Dust*||(*Industrial Electrolyzer)|
Some values could be incorrect
According to the source code the effect is not actually triggered by lightning striking the rod. Instead, it calculates a random number, and checks if this number is below (Rod_Length * Top_Of_Rod_Height).
If that is the case (and there is a thunder storm at the moment), it generates an artificial lightning bolt that strikes the rod. Then the charge is set to 25.000.000. If a real lightning bolt would hit the rod, nothing would happen.
Using other mods to create more lightning bolts won't do anything. What does help, though, is to use mods that set the weather to thunder storm, since the Lightning Rod needs a thunder storm to do anything at all.
If one is willing to live with the negative side-effects, the Dragon Egg Energy Siphon and the Lightning Rod can be used for effective generation of power: The Energy Siphon will inevitably produce huge amounts of Flux. As a result of this, a message about Flux altering the weather will appear quite often, causing a thunderstorm and thus setting excellent conditions for lightning strikes on the Lightning Rod. Note though that the frequent lightning strikes directed at the player are a huge downside, plus they cannot be used for power generation.