“According to Pasek, the energy released by lightning is measured in megajoules, also expressed as MJ/m.
“For example a single megajoule is equivalent to about 200 food calories, or the energy from leaving a microwave on for 20 minutes to cook food,” he explains. “It can also be compared to a 60 watt lightbulb’s energy use if left on for about four hours. It’s also the same as the kinetic energy a car has traveling about 60 mph.” Their research found that the energy produced by a lightning strike peaked at greater than 20MJ/m.
The researchers also found a way to separate the “normal” lightning strikes from the “abnormal.””
From the UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH FLORIDA (USF INNOVATION)
Study provides a new method to measure the energy of a lightning strike
By investigating ‘fossilized’ sand cylinders made by lightning strikes, sometimes thousands of years old, a University of South Florida professor provides a unique history of lightning and the energy contained in a single strike
According to Pasek, one of the more difficult things to measure is the amount of energy in a lightning strike. While atmospheric…
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