Midnight In The Desert — lightning

Over 250,000 lightning strikes in one night in Austrailia [Video]

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Over 250,000 lightning strikes in one night in Austrailia [Video]

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Lightning Bolts Are Churning Out Antimatter All Over Planet Earth

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Lightning Bolts Are Churning Out Antimatter All Over Planet Earth

Particles split in the hot belly of a lightning bolt. Radioactive particles decay in the afterglow. Gamma rays rain down to Earth. Teruaki Enoto, a physicist at Kyoto University in Japan, proved for the first time, in a paper published Nov. 23, that lightning bolts work as natural particle accelerators. Enoto and his co-authors' results confirm for the first time speculation dating back to 1925 about this phenomenon. Back then, scientists suggested that energized, radioactive particles might zip through the booms and flashes of a thunderstorm. Those particles emit energy at precise wavelengths, which Enoto and colleagues are the first...

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Lightning bolts strike One World Trade Center

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A New Explanation for One of the Strangest Occurrences in Nature—Ball Lightning

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A New Explanation for One of the Strangest Occurrences in Nature—Ball Lightning

Every so often, given the proper conditions, a small and roughly spherical piece of the atmosphere around us will briefly catch fire. As they are best viewed late into the night and have no obvious natural explanation, it’s perhaps no wonder they’ve inspired a rich mythology. Names for balls of fire include ignis fatuus, will-o’-the-wisp, ghost lights, and ball lightning. They’ve been said to hover above graves, dance along the banks of rivers, signal the imminent arrival of an earthquake, and stalk the aisles of airplanes. Even today, we don’t have a crystal-clear understanding of how they form and do...

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Jet Lightning! Rarely Seen 'Blue Jets' Spotted by Cloud Cam

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Jet Lightning! Rarely Seen 'Blue Jets' Spotted by Cloud Cam

A spectacular outburst of jet lightning, also known as "gigantic jets," was captured by the Gemini Observatory’s cloud camera on Mauna Kea in Hawaii on July 24. In a photo gallery of weird lightning types, our sister site Live Science states that gigantic jets "may be the tallest kind of lightning in the world. More than 50 miles (80 kilometers) above Earth's surface." The Gemini Observatory's time-lapse video also shows mesospheric gravity waves, which "could have been caused by the strong convection present in the thunderstorm," according to Spaceweather.com contributor Frankie Lucena. (Gravity waves are restricted to bodies of water...

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