Lightning in New Mexico, USA

Lightning in New Mexico, USA

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Credit: KEITH KENT/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Lightning. Night-time view of multiple bolts of lightning striking the ground. Lightning occurs when a large, electrical charge builds up in a cloud. This is probably due to the rapid movement of water droplets and ice particles within the cloud. Large thunderclouds generally have very turbulent interiors. The charge induces an opposite charge on the ground, and a few "leader electrons" travel to the ground. When one makes contact, there is a huge backflow of energy up the path of the electron. This produces a bright flash of light and temperatures of up to 30,000 degrees celsius. Photographed near Lordsburg, New Mexico, USA.

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Keywords: awe, awesome, climate, cloud to ground, electrical storm, lightning, lightning strike, meteorology, multiple, multiple strike, new mexico, night, storm, storms, weather

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