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Questions tagged [lightning]

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24 views

Avoid lightning with electric insulation?

Location: garden-city If we would: put a 1.5m steel bar, 1m in the ground, 50cm above the ground vs.: put a 1.5m steel bar, 1m in the ground, 50cm above the ground BUT fully covering it with ...
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2answers
56 views

Could you transmit electricity wirelessly?

Since you can wiggle an electron to get a radio wave And if you 'wiggle' it fast enough you get higher and higher frequency right? So couldn't you just broadcast an electromagnetic beam or whatever ...
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2answers
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Can one assume during the discharge of lightning, some energy is dissipated as heat? (High School Physics)

I was doing homework, and the following appeared as a question: A negatively charged thundercloud above Earth's surface may be modeled by a parallel plate capacitor. The lower plate of the ...
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0answers
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Why can't we harness the energy of lightning? [duplicate]

Studying capacitors, this question struck me. If we know that there is a large potential difference between the ground and the atmosphere, why dont we use that to power our machinery? I understand ...
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0answers
25 views

How much does science know about lightning? [closed]

In his Lectures, Feynman says the following: So the fundamental origin of lightning is really not thoroughly understood. We know it comes from the thunderstorms. Source: http://www.feynmanlectures....
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1answer
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Why can't we generate electricity from Earth's electric field?

This may be very silly, but I need to understand this to get my concepts right. Consider the fact that the electric field b/w the Earth's surface and the ionosphere is on an average $100$ V/m, then ...
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1answer
36 views

What Would Happen If Lightning Struck A Whirlpool/Maelstrom?

Theoretically, if lightning were to strike a whirlpool or maelstrom, what would happen to the lightning? This may seem like a silly question, but I really have no clue. Would the centrifugal force of ...
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0answers
62 views

Lightning through Helium gas

Assuming that some distant planet had an atmosphere of helium and(due to extremely cold temperatures) a "water cycle" of neon, what would happen if the theoretical neon clouds acted in a similar way ...
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1answer
44 views

Is the passage of lightning on a transmission line? [closed]

If so, then shouldn't lightning be reflected back into the sky everytime it hits the earth, due to an impedance change?
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1answer
30 views

Risk of electrocution from lighting strike on metal home elevated by wood piles

What would the risk be of electrocution caused by a lightning strike of a metal home elevated by wooden piles? The entire home's structure is metal (galvanized steel roof, aluminum subroof, aluminum ...
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0answers
7 views

What is the speed of electrons in different electric discharges through gas?

So far, I am aware that electrons move at astonishing 100000km/s through a lightning. However I have no idea about arc discharges of different magnitudes and different discharges. I want to know how ...
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1answer
38 views

Lightning without clouds

Similar question already on here and it’s been closed. Sounds like same experience. About 4am last night, dim lightning flashes, warm color temp, about half second durations. Very localized. Can flash ...
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4answers
1k views

How many photons are emitted by a lightning strike?

As the title suggests, I'm curious to know, approximately how many photons are emitted in a single lightning strike?
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1answer
69 views

What is the purpose of this wire loop around a guy-wire?

I recently visited this tower on top of a rock. There is a wire loop around the tower, with extensions going down the rock. This picture provides a good view of the tower and wires. The wires that ...
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0answers
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What portion of the energy carried by lightning is lost as ionization, heat, light, sound and other phenomena before it hits the ground?

What portion of the energy carried by lightning is lost as heat, light and sound, by ionizing the atmosphere or to other phenomena the space between its source and the ground? How does it vary ...
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0answers
63 views

Lightning in space, would it be a perfectly straight line?

I have read this question: Can lightning happen in a vacuum? I do understand that here on Earth lightning consists of electrons moving in space and some of these electrons are tracing path, and ...
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2answers
106 views

What causes the color difference of lightning flashes?

Some flashes of lightning are seen in a blue shade while some have a yellowish/orange appearance .What is the possible cause of colour difference?
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4answers
3k views

What causes the direction of lightning flashes?

During a lightning strike, the flashes appear as cloud to ground or cloud to cloud. Why is this the only manner of propagation? Why do the flashes not go upwards from the clouds into the sky?
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1answer
55 views

Can we replicate the sound of thunder with just the lightning?

Scientists are able to extract sound of a two black holes merging from the data they collected without actually hearing it, but we don't know how it actually sounds, that's just a representation of ...
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1answer
60 views

Do electrons in a flash of lightning oscillate between Earth and the clouds (or between clouds)?

In this video, around 2:24, one can see a flash of lightning that keeps the same form for a little time span. Does this mean that it takes a while before the discharge is complete (which I can't ...
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2answers
138 views

What could cause a small shock from an umbrella being held near a lightning strike?

I was just outside holding an umbrella when lightning struck very close by. In the instant it struck, I saw and felt a little shock from the shaft of the umbrella into my thumb. It felt quite small.. ...
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1answer
64 views

Electricity and light bulbs [closed]

Kindly say if I am right? Case1: Current flow and light from an incandescent bulb. Reason for light due to current flow: Tungsten is an insulator (comparatively) so when sufficiently high ...
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1answer
46 views

Why and how fast does lightning propagate?

While looking at this youtube video of lightning in 1000 fps I was somewhat surprised that such a frame rate is enough to capture the propagation of lightning. I have no clue about photography of ...
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0answers
37 views

How do scientists determine the width a thunderbolt?

As I searched on the internet, I found a website stating that the width of a typical lightening strike is $2.5~$cm wide and $8$ km long. I intuitively understand that scientists can measure the length ...
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1answer
104 views

What would happen if lightning struck a salt deposit?

I'm not familiar with the formulae involved in lightning discharge, so please bear with me here. As far as I'm aware, lightning (that is, cloud-to-ground lightning) tends to do one of three things, ...
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1answer
77 views

Can lightning bend metal?

If lightning strikes a metal pole, will it bend because of the force exerted by Earth's magnetic field on the current?
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1answer
29 views

Why is the inductance of ionized air similar to inductance of wire?

Why is inductance of wire which is about 1 microHenry per meter similar to the inductance of air broken down by lightning (where the high voltage of a lightning strike breaks air down and it becomes a ...
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1answer
36 views

How do lightnings have matter but light doesn’t?

if lightning is plasma which is a state of matter that means that lightnings have matter. but light is electromagnetic radiation and doesn’t have matter? can someone please explain? thanks
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3answers
44 views

Can a lightning which doesnt make light be made?

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 ...
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1answer
35 views

For a building on a slope, should the earthed (grounded) lightning protection be downhill or uphill from the structure? [closed]

Would it be best to place the earth protection (the copper spike) for a building on a slope downhill (A) or uphill (B) from the structure? Assume that lightning is most likely to strike at (C), the ...
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2answers
111 views

How large of a capacitor is needed to hold 5,000,000,000 J? [closed]

Given today's technology, what size of capacitor (in farads and physical size) would be required to hold 5,000,000,000 J of energy, the estimate for the amount of energy in the average lightning bolt?
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4answers
557 views

Car hit by a lightning strike

In Griffiths' Introduction to Electrodynamics, at the Electrostatics chapter, in particular, in the conductors section, he says this after the stating that within an empty cavity surrounded by a ...
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1answer
54 views

How do bulk regions of clouds conduct charges into a lightning bolt?

It's easy to find explanations of the theories of charge accumulation in clouds during storms, as well as ones describing suspected processes leading to lightning channel formation. What I have yet to ...
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3answers
1k views

Is it possible for a lightning strike to hit the ground if there are high rise buildings nearby?

Say we have pointed conductors connected to the top of the high rise buildings. Will the strikes hit the nearby ground in such a case?
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2answers
157 views

Does lightning have pressure?

Hi do lightning have pressure if yes what is it ? Nikola tesla has invented the artificial lightning so can we make it ?
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3answers
1k views

What determines the shape of lightning? [duplicate]

Everyone's seen lightning streaks, either in real life or in pictures and videos. My question is, why does it look the way it does? Does lightning spread in a random manner, or is there physics ...
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1answer
36 views

Reference frame(s) for return stroke of lightning bolts

A lightning bolt consists of two processes, one of them is slow -- the forward stroke, the other occurs at around a third of the speed of light $c$. Each little part of the lightning bolt looks kind ...
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1answer
70 views

Lightning strike on aircraft

Is an electromagnetic pulse sufficient to account for the complete dscharge of an aircraft struck by lightning?
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0answers
50 views

Why does Lightning have branches? [duplicate]

Why does lightning have branches? A straight line from the clouds to the ground should be the path of least resistance, then why does it branch out? If it is because of different gases present in air ...
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2answers
194 views

Why photon and electrons travel at same speed in thunder

They say light travels faster than sound. Lightning is just electrons, right? Then why are both electrons and photons traveling at the same speed when thunder storms occur?
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2answers
191 views

Is the speed of sound constant?

I was looking at lightning, and started to wonder if the speed of the thunder slowed down as it lost energy traveling far distances. I know the amplitude of sound decreases, perceived as volume. Im ...
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2answers
39 views

Lightning vs series of resistors

So I was wondering if, theoretically, can a series of resistors kill off lightning current or make it low enough to sustain a battery?
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1answer
163 views

Why sound is produced during lightning? [duplicate]

During lightning ,both light and sound is produced . I want to know why light and sound is produced?
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2answers
154 views

Is lightening a form of alternating or direct current? [closed]

Is lightening a form of alternating or direct current? I have no idea about this, so help me.
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2answers
326 views

Spark Length in Air vs. DC Voltage

How can I calculate the potential difference (in DC) needed to create an electric spark of a specific length (between 0-5mm) in air? The sparks are observed between 2.5cm metal spheres. Is there a ...
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3answers
6k views

Tree vs lightning rod: why does one burn and the other not?

I have this simple question, but I cannot find the answer. I saw this video about a plane getting hit by lightning. In it, Captain Joe explains why people do not get electrocuted. This has a simple ...
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2answers
75 views

Why do many animals die at the same time when lighting hits surroundings?

I have been reading about many cases in history of lighting striking and killing dozens even hundreds of animals, to be more specific quadruples, at the same time. Apparently this doesn't happen with ...
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2answers
720 views

Lightning on Burj Khalifa

Does Burj Khalifa, being the tallest building and the best route for lightning, experience most lightning? I suppose lightning in a radius around Burj Khalifa would only fall on it and nowhere else. ...
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2answers
163 views

Does the lumen value of a light bulb take into account the inverse square law and volume of a room?

For example, I am trying to calculate the number of 800lm light bulbs required to light a 16sq meter bed room with a 2.5m celling that doubles as a study. Assuming 75 lux is required, this converts to ...
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1answer
1k views

How do electrons move in a lightning strike? [duplicate]

I know that a common lightning strike is an electric current and I believe air has high electrical resistance comparatively, detail is not important however I think friction caused a build up of ...