March 22, 2023 7:34 pm

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The Science of Lightning and Thunder


Lightning is electrical in nature & Sometime ago i theorized that electricity is intelligent fire.

Looking at it today it’s still a nice theory.

What causes Lightning?


Lightning is a discharge caused by electrical imbalances between storm clouds and the ground, or within the clouds themselves.

Non science students can only get this gist from Google cos no subject taught that.

What causes thunder?

It’s the surrounding air which rapidly expand and vibrate when a lightning streak through it.

It comes seconds after because sound is a slow traveller.

That’s for the introduction.

Lets start logical ponder.

Why does thunder exist?

Well the clouds are the culprits here. Clouds causes lightning.

They look cute and benign but they are like village people/evil sorcerers. When they gather they be doing a meeting on who to fire with thunder. Lol. I’m just kidding.

Most thunder strikes within the clouds and its safe to say the clouds are warming or preparing it very well. Lol. There I go again.

Ok let’s be serious. I’ll be all facts now.

Facts 1

About 100 lightning bolts strike the Earth’s surface every second That’s about 8 million per day and 3 billion each year.

The path a lightning takes is not just a random path.

Theres a key determinant of a path that a lightning takes. In other words, here’s what determines where a thunder should strike

Its the path with the least negative charge.

Lightning basically tries to find the path of least resistance as it travels down to the ground. But this is not always a straight line because air is not a perfect mixture,therefore, the resistance varies. As a result, lightning strikes are often observed in a zigzag pattern.

Before a lightning is seen, the path it will take has already been established. More like receiving intelligence.

Ions in the air arrange and stay firm then heavy electrical energy passes.

Interestingly, the lightening you observe is actually the earth returning it with grater energy.

The return stroke is the most luminous and noticeable part of the lightning discharge.


Try this experiment at home

Take a lighter, remove the spark ignitor and try to spark it. There’s this wire that delivers the charge.

You’ll notice something interesting. The spark doesn’t come when there’s nothing close to it

Bring it close to an object and spark it and you will see a discharge.

That’s cos it has mapped out a path and a destination

That’s a teeny tiny lighting there.

That’s it for lightning. If you enjoyed this analysis, kindly share. Thanks!



lightning science nature facts

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1 year ago

Wait that is tall I’m not safe when it’s raining? Science I love you.

Testimony Bolorunde
1 year ago

the illustration of the clouds as village people got me laughing




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