Upward electrical discharges from thunderstorms

  title={Upward electrical discharges from thunderstorms},
  author={Paul R. Krehbiel and Jeremy A. Riousset and Victor P. Pasko and Ronald J. Thomas and William Rison and Mark A. Stanley and Harald E. Edens},
  journal={Nature Geoscience},
Blue jets, gigantic jets, cloud-to-cloud discharges and cloud-to-ground lightning are all electrical discharges from thunderclouds. An analysis of numerical simulations and observations of these phenomena places them all in a unifying framework. Thunderstorms occasionally produce upward discharges, called blue jets and gigantic jets, that propagate out of the storm top towards or up to the ionosphere1,2,3,4. Whereas the various types of intracloud and cloud-to-ground lightning are reasonably… 

Thunderstorm charge structures producing gigantic jets

Gigantic jets are atmospheric electrical discharges that propagate from the top of thunderclouds to the lower ionosphere. They begin as lightning leaders inside the thundercloud, and the thundercloud

Discharges in the Stratosphere and Mesosphere

In the present paper salient features of discharges in the stratosphere and mesosphere (namely sprites, halos, blue starters, blue jets, gigantic jets and elves), are discussed. The electrostatic

Observation of the onset of a blue jet into the stratosphere.

Blue jets are lightning-like, atmospheric electric discharges of several hundred millisecond duration that fan into cones as they propagate from the top of thunderclouds into the stratosphere1. They

Thunderstorm clouds may discharge directly to the ionosphere in spectacular luminous jets – the largest electric discharges of our planet

[1] Thunderstorm clouds may discharge directly to the ionosphere in spectacular luminous jets – the largest electric discharges of our planet. The properties of these “giants,” such as their

Upward electrical discharges observed above Tropical Depression Dorian

Close-distance observation of seven upward discharges from thunderstorms including one starter, two jets and four gigantic jets above Tropical Depression Dorian indicates that all events are of negative polarity, suggesting they are initiated in the same thundercloud charge region.

Meteorological and Electrical Conditions of Two Mid‐latitude Thunderstorms Producing Blue Discharges

Blue discharges are one type of rarely observed upward discharge emerging from the top of thunderstorms. The favorable meteorological conditions and charge structures needed to produce this marvelous

Upward propagation of gigantic jets revealed by 3D radio and optical mapping

Occasionally, lightning will exit the top of a thunderstorm and connect to the lower edge of space, forming a gigantic jet. Here, we report on observations of a negative gigantic jet that transferred

Blue jets and gigantic jets: transient luminous events between thunderstorm tops and the lower ionosphere

  • V. Pasko
  • Physics, Environmental Science
  • 2008
An overview of general phenomenology and proposed physical mechanisms of large scale electrical discharges termed ‘blue jets’ and ‘gigantic jets’ observed at high altitude in the Earth's atmosphere

Observations of Blue Corona Discharges in Thunderclouds

Blue electric streamer discharges in the upper reaches of thunderclouds are observed as flashes of 337.0 nm (blue) with faint or no emissions of 777.4 nm (red). Analyzing 3 years of measurements by



Gigantic jets between a thundercloud and the ionosphere

Observations of five gigantic jets that establish a direct link between a thundercloud and the ionosphere at 90 km elevation indicate that the extremely-low-frequency waves were generated by negative cloud-to-ionosphere discharges, which would reduce the electrical potential between ionosphere and ground.

Electrical discharge from a thundercloud top to the lower ionosphere

A video recording of a blue jet propagating upwards from a thundercloud to an altitude of about 70 km is reported, taken at the Arecibo Observatory, Puerto Rico, to speculate that it may be common and therefore represent an unaccounted for component of the global electric circuit.

Upward Electrical Discharges From Thunderstorm Tops

A variety of storm top electrical discharges have been observed using several types of low-light imagers, film, and the human eye. Recently, a video recorded an unprecedented, bright blue upward

Runaway breakdown and electric discharges in thunderstorms

This review concerns the theory of the avalanche multiplication of high-energy (0.1 – 10 MeV) electrons in a neutral material, a newly discovered phenomenon known as runaway breakdown (RB). In

Effects of charge and electrostatic potential on lightning propagation

[1] Three-dimensional lightning mapping observations are compared to cloud charge structures and electric potential profiles inferred from balloon soundings of electric field in New Mexico mountain

Elves : Lightning-induced transient luminous events in the lower ionosphere

Observations of optical phenomena at. high alti- tude a, bove thunderstorms using a multichannel high-speed photometer and image intensified CCD cameras were carried out at Yucca Ridge Field Station

Cloud‐to‐ground lightning associated with the evolution of a multicell storm

[1] The relationship of cloud-to-ground (CG) lightning strikes to the stages of updraft/downdraft evolution is investigated in a multicell thunderstorm that occurred on 11 July 1989 during the North