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Dec 10, 2019

ISS Sees Thunderstorm Beaming Electromagnetic Pulse Into Space, Producing Gamma Rays and ‘Elves’

Posted by in categories: climatology, space

O…O.


At 8:01 p.m. on October 10, 2018, a bolt of lightning flashed inside of a storm cloud just east of the Indonesian island of Sulawesi. The International Space Station was passing overhead at the time, and a suite of instruments observed as the bolt produced a flash of gamma radiation—and, simultaneously, emitted a glowing ring of ultraviolet and visible light in the topmost layer of the atmosphere.

Scientists today are presenting the results of this observation, the first to capture both a terrestrial gamma ray flash, or TGF, and the visible-light component of an Elve, a dim disk of ionospheric radiation. This observation provides more evidence for the connection between lightning, the radiation produced by storms, and electromagnetic phenomena at the top of the atmosphere, while illustrating more of the wild radioactive curiosities that weather can generate.

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