Rare "positive" lightning bolt caught on video

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2019/05/11/rare-positive-lightning-bo.html

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DAMN, I was aiming for Mar a largo!

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Thor’s drunk again.

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Yeah, I’m positive that was lightning too.

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Looks like she found proof positive.

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Will forgive the vertical framing, just this one time.

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“Up to 10 times stronger than a typical flash…” WHAT?! I have had the unfortunate experience of being an extremely near miss of negative lightning strikes twice in my life, and those popping & crackling sounds on the video are negligible compared to the explosive, concussive force I experienced!

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The phone’s microphone probably isn’t capable of capturing the full sound.

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As I grew up in Ohio I am no stranger to wild ass lightning but

image

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“an unusual bolt of lightning up to 10 times stronger than a typical flash”

i think is describing positive lightning as a phenomena, not this specific bolt, perhaps?

also “up to” makes this just a vague range statement.

“stronger” without any qualifier makes the meaning unclear. stronger charge? emits a stronger light? creates a stronger sound wave? creates more damage? causes more atmospheric oxidization? who can know.

one can’t read too much into a statement written in such a manner ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

I’ve also been near quite a few strikes when mountain climbing and hiking. the pins and needles and the smell of ozone. I wouldn’t want to be hit by any type of lightning. :slight_smile: or strong electrical discharge from anything man made either for that matter. no thanks. :+1:

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Nor the speakers on whatever device people are using to watch the YouTube video. Ditto camera/screen brightness.

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From Wikipedia:
Positive lightning strikes tend to be much more intense than their negative counterparts. An average bolt of negative lightning carries an electric current of 30,000 amperes (30 kA), and transfers 15 coulombs of electric charge and 500 megajoules of energy. Large bolts of negative lightning can carry up to 120 kA and 350 coulombs.[39] The average positive ground flash has roughly double the peak current of a typical negative flash, and can produce peak currents up to 400,000 amperes (400 kA) and charges of several hundred coulombs.[40][41] Furthermore, positive ground flashes with high peak currents are commonly followed by long continuing currents, a correlation not seen in negative ground flashes.[42]

As a result of their greater power, as well as lack of warning, positive lightning strikes are considerably more dangerous. Due to the aforementioned tendency for positive ground flashes to produce both high peak currents and long continuing current, they are capable of heating surfaces to much higher levels which increases the likelihood of a fire being ignited.

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So which kind powered the DeLorean?

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Or still. Fat Thor.

Disappointed. Was hoping for some sort of positron lightning flash.

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This reminds me a little of something strange I saw during an extremely active thunderstorm several years ago- lightning was flashing literally every three to five seconds for several hours. One of the bolts was particularly bright, and the weird part was that where it struck, I could see a strange throbbing green glow for a few seconds. I couldn’t see the actual spot of the strike, but the glow flashed from behind the hill that was obscuring my view. As far as I remember, the bolt itself wasn’t green. Anyone have any idea what could cause that?

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borg particle weapon

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Swamp gas from a weather balloon was trapped in a thermal pocket and reflected the light from Venus. Nothing to see here. Move along.

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Here’s an article from National Geographic

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