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What is ball lightning?


Ball lightning is considered one of the most mysterious and interesting natural phenomena; it is no coincidence that it is called the “intelligent ball". Despite the high level of development of modern science, scientists cannot yet give an unambiguous answer about its nature. And imagine what horror and fear ball lightning inspired on our distant ancestors. By the way, the latter endowed her with mystical qualities. In their opinion, she, like the eclipse of the sun, was a harbinger of significant events.

What do scientists say?

There are quite a few scientific theories about the origin of ball lightning. But all of them remain hypotheses and so far cannot shed light on the emergence of "intelligent balls". In fairness, it should be noted that scientists in the laboratory manage to create something remotely similar to ball lightning. But that is where their achievements end.

One of the first theories about the origin of "intelligent balls" was put forward by the Russian scientist P. L. Kapitsa. Later, based on his findings, other hypotheses were created. The academician suggested that the source of ball lightning is short-wave electromagnetic oscillations between thunderclouds and the earth. True, the scientist did not give an answer to the question about the origin of the above fluctuations. Opponents of this theory note that there have been cases of the appearance of ball lightning in clear weather. It is also impossible to tie the appearance of "intelligent balls" to places with a large electromagnetic field, since the facts of the appearance of "balls" in a pure field are noted.

Also noteworthy are the theories of B. M. Smirnov and D. Turner. The first believes that the core of ball lightning has a cellular structure and has a strong frame, which consists of plasma filaments. The second relates the nature of "intelligent balls" to thermochemical effects occurring in saturated water vapor under the condition of a strong electromagnetic field.

New Zealand scientists also put forward an original theory. Chemists D. Abrahamson and D. Dinnis found that when lightning hits the ground, which contains carbon and silicates, a fireball appears from the fibers of silicon and its carbide. This ball has a temperature of over 1000 ° C, but gradually it cools down and dissolves.

Types of ball lightning

In most cases, ball lightning is a small luminous ball. However, its volume may vary. Quite rarely there are "reasonable balls" in shape similar to a drop, a mushroom, a bagel or a lens. As for the color spectrum, ball lightning can be bright orange, red, blue, transparent or even black. Moreover, the ball can change color and shimmer.

Why "intelligent balls"?

It is impossible to explain the behavior of ball lightning with the help of physical laws. They move unpredictably, in different directions. The balls can stop and then start moving again. It seems that these are intelligent beings who accidentally (or maybe not) got into our world, and study it with great curiosity.

How to behave when meeting with ball lightning?

Let’s make a reservation right away that the probability of injuries or deaths when people encounter ball lightning is minimal and amounts to only 10% of the total number of recorded facts of the appearance of lightning. And if you are still “lucky” to meet with “intelligent balls”, then the main thing is not to panic and do not make sudden movements. Ball lightning is very susceptible to the movement of air masses. And in no case do not throw any objects into the ball. It might just explode.

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