Friday, August 19, 2005

Lightning research

Here is one that just shows some cool research...

It has long been suspected that the cause of lightning relies on friction between ice particles suspended in enormous storm clouds. The mechanism is no different than rubbing balloons to stick them on walls or make your hair stand up with plastic combs, or rub your socked feet on a carpet and touch a doorknob. All of these are the same, electrostatic in nature, and require rubbing things together. Well, nowadays scientists track lightning strikes with satellites and can identify relatively small ice balls in clouds with radar systems, and the first convincing correlation between the two has been established.

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