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Anomalous phenomenon on Earth captured from space

Added Sat, 23/01/2021
Дата публикации
Sat, 23/01/2021

The International Space Station's Atmosphere-Space Interactions Monitor (ASIM) has recorded five blue jets — an anomalous type of lightning that strikes from the top of a thundercloud into the stratosphere. This is reported in an article published in the journal Nature.

Jets lasting 10 microseconds were spotted on February 26, 2019 near the island of Nauru in the Pacific Ocean. One of the lightning flashes produced a jet that reached the stratopause-the boundary between the stratosphere and the ionosphere at an altitude of about 50 to 55 kilometers. In addition to the jets, "ELVES" were recorded, which are expanding rings of optical and ultraviolet radiation in the stratosphere, lasting no more than a millisecond.

Blue jets occur during an electrical breakdown between the positively charged upper part of a thundercloud and the negatively charged layer of air above it. As a result, a leader is formed — a conducting channel of ionized air, through which the discharge propagates. However, in this case, the radiation from the leader was weak, indicating that the leader itself was short compared to the conducting channels of conventional lightning.

The blue jets themselves belong to streamers — branched strands of electrical discharges, similar to those generated by Tesla coils. In addition, blue jets are most likely as a phenomenon more common than previously thought.

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