And the Lightening Strikes … 199 Miles Long

So I came across an intriguing article browsing web news sites today: “Record 199-mile-long Lightening Bolt” linking to the following article:

I asked the natural question: how can anyone determine the length of a lightening bolt?   I found this paper by Martin A. Uman, Southern University Florida: “How Long and How Wide is the Lightening Channel?”

So the two things they use determine lightening length are 1) photography and 2) Radar.

Through photography, when a lightening bolt is captured,  the length two known points is measured. Sounds basic but flawed.

Radar sends out let romantic pulses that travel at 186,000 miles per SECOND! When a bolt goes out and radar happens to catch it, those pulses bounce off the lightening channel back to the radar making measurement possible.

According to the article, The longest lightening according to the article was 199 miles in 2007 happening in Oklahoma.  The longest lasting lightening strike recorded was 7.74 seconds in France.

Now I know. And so do you. 😜👍