Lightning

Lightning

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Credit: JIM REED/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Lightning. Storm chasers observing a lightning storm at sunset. Rain can be seen falling around the lightning bolt. 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 in the turbulent interior of the cloud. Cloud-to-ground lightning occurs between a negatively charged cloud base and the positively charged ground. 'Leader electrons' leave the cloud and when contact is made, there is a huge backflow of energy along the path of the electrons. This produces a bright flash of light and temperatures of up to 30,000 degrees Celsius. Photographed in South Dakota, USA.

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Keywords: adverse, america, american, bolt, chasers, climate, cloud, cloud-to-ground, clouds, dusk, electrical, electrical storm, extreme, horizon, lightning, male, man, men, meteorologist, meteorology, monitoring, observer, observers, rain, rainfall, raining, recording, researcher, researchers, scientist, south dakota, storm chaser, storms, stormy, sunset, twilight, us, usa, watching, weather

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