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I was wondering if there is a way to make a lightning (lab lightning, nothing as chaotic as the real thing) that doesnt eject any electromagnetic waves? For example: How would a strong negative magnet affect a lightning in a tube?

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  • $\begingroup$ Lightning is simply the electrical breakdown of air, which ionises the air molecules creating plasma. The ionisation of air is a very energetic process which releases EM waves due collisions between ions and atoms. A magnet would simply curve the path of lightning according to the Lorentz force law, but the underlying microscopic ionisations and collisions will remain, still releasing light. It is unlikely that you can create lightning without producing any waves unless it is a very idealistic, controlled scenario. It is possible, though, to make lightning of waves outside visible spectrum. $\endgroup$ – Hexiang Chang Sep 19 '18 at 16:41
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As pointed out by Hexiang Chang, lightning occurs when air ionizes and thereby becomes electrically conductive. It is possible for air to become conductive and not produce an explosive light flash. The phenomenon is called dark discharge and can be produced in the laboratory under carefully controlled conditions. Key among these is the requirement that the current which is allowed to flow through the air be limited by external means so the runaway ionization avalanche is blocked. This prevents the development of a "power arc" in the test apparatus, which is what occurs on far larger scales in actual lightning.

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I was wondering if there is a way to make a lightning (lab lightning, nothing as chaotic as the real thing) that doesn't eject any electromagnetic waves?

Lightning is essentially an electrostatic discharge, which means that it involves a quickly changing electric current, which means that it will radiate electromagnetic waves. Think about the effect of sparks on radio reception.

How would a strong negative magnet affect a lightning in a tube?

The magnet should cause some local deflection in the discharge current path, but I am not sure if it would be easy to observe considering that the discharge path could significantly vary even without external interference.

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The lighting happens due to electrical breakdown of air. The air molecules get ionised and this accelerated ion's and electrons produce EM radiation, which cannot be made invisible. But, we have try for infrared or near infrared radiation so that emitted radiations shall not lie in visible spectrum, so it will be visible to your eyes. And the magnet shall have effect on lighting. The motion of ions and electrons shall change a bit depending on strength of magnetic field as per Lorentz force law.

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