Thursday, May 10, 2007

Lightning Reflections

Lightning Reflections, originally uploaded by jw_creations.

Looking South over Lake Monona, the mirror-like lake seemingly doubles the impact of lightning bolts. Heavy, lightning laden storms are common in this part of the country during spring and summer months. This particular hail based storm system was moving to West to East just South of Madison, and thankfully missed us completely without even giving much more than a breeze.

What may seem like a single lightning strike actually "re-strikes" the same object an average of 8 to 12 times repeatedly, and is what causes the "strobe light" effect we're familiar with. A single bolt of lightning can travel at a speed of 100,000 mph, and can reach temperatures approaching 50,000°F with roughly one billion volts of electricity - enough to fuse sand into columns of glass.

On average lightning strikes the Earth 100 times a second.

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