Lightning is a massive electrostatic discharge caused by unbalanced electric charge in the atmosphere, either inside clouds, cloud to cloud or cloud to ground, accompanied by the loud sound of thunder.
A typical cloud to ground lightning strike can be over 5 km (3 mi) long. A typical thunderstorm may have three or more strikes per minute at its peak. Lightning is usually produced by cumulonimbus clouds up to 15 km high (10 mi) high, based 5-6 km (3-4 mi) above the ground. Lightning is caused by the circulation of warm moisture-filled air through electric fields. Ice or water particles then accumulate charge as in a Van de Graaf generator. Lightning may occur during snow storms (thundersnow), volcanic eruptions, dust storms, forest fires or tornadoes. Hurricanes typically generate some lightning, mainly in the rainbands as much as 160 km (100 mi) from the center.
When the local electric field exceeds the dielectric strength of damp air (about 3 million Volts/m), electrical discharge results, often followed by more discharges along the same path. Mechanisms that cause lightning are still a matter of scientific investigation.
Fear of lightning is called astraphobia. The study or science of lightning is called fulminology.
Other articles related to "lightning":
... After being drafted by the Tampa Bay Lightning 183rd overall in 2002, he played 2 more seasons with the Generals before signing with the Springfield Falcons of the AHL for the 2004-05 NHL Lockout ... After the lockout, he played 76 games with the Lightning, scoring 18 points ... As of October 2009, Ranger was granted personal leave from the Lightning ...
... Nozomi Kaibara Shelley Calene-Black - Reika Tiffany Grant - Jun Andy McAvin - Lightning Chief, Narrator, Yaokichi Chris Patton - Shiro Sugino, Stage ... Akabi David Matranga - Bass Player, Kaito Kosaka David Raynes - Lightning Operator Jason Douglas - Announcer, Yoh John Gremillion - Sho Kaibara John Swasey - PA Announcer John Tyson - Hikoza Ohishi Kelly ...
... Thunderbolts and lightning bolts—also called "lightning flashes"—are shown in a stylized way ...
... The Dallas Lightning were a U.S ... Based in Tyler, Texas, the club originally started as the Tyler Lightning and became the Texas Lightning upon their move to Dallas, Texas for the 1993/94 indoor season ... They were renamed the Dallas Lightning for the 1995/96 indoor season ...
... They are triggered by the discharges of positive lightning between the thundercloud and the ground ...
Famous quotes containing the word lightning:
“Would not some lightning flash of vision sear peoples consciousness into life again? What was the good of stopping the war if armies continued?”
—John Dos Passos (18961970)
“O, better that her shattered hulk
Should sink beneath the wave;
Her thunders shook the mighty deep,
And there should be her grave;
Nail to the mast her holy flag,
Set every threadbare sail,
And give her to the god of storms,
The lightning and the gale!”
—Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr. (18091894)
“Swift as a shadow, short as any dream,
Brief as the lightning in the collied night,
That in a spleen unfolds both heaven and earth,
And, ere a man hath power to say Behold!
The jaws of darkness do devour it up.
So quick bright things come to confusion.”
—William Shakespeare (15641616)