APOD: Lightning Captured at 7207 Images... (2012 Jul 23)

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APOD: Lightning Captured at 7207 Images... (2012 Jul 23)

Post by APOD Robot » Mon Jul 23, 2012 4:05 am

Image Lightning Captured at 7207 Images per Second

Explanation: How fast is lightning? Lightning, in fact, moves not only too fast for humans to see, but so fast that humans can't even tell which direction it is moving. The above lightning stroke did not move too fast, however, for this extremely high time resolution video to resolve. Tracking at an incredible 7,207 frames per second, actual time can be seen progressing at the video bottom. The above lightning bolt starts with many simultaneously creating ionized channels branching out from an negatively charged pool of electrons and ions that has somehow been created by drafts and collisions in a rain cloud. About 0.015 seconds after appearing -- which takes about 3 seconds in the above time-lapse video -- one of the meandering charge leaders makes contact with a suddenly appearing positive spike moving up from the ground and an ionized channel of air is created that instantly acts like a wire. Immediately afterwards, this hot channel pulses with a tremendous amount of charges shooting back and forth between the cloud and the ground, creating a dangerous explosion that is later heard as thunder. Much remains unknown about lightning, however, including details of the mechanism that separates charges.

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Re: APOD: Lightning Captured at 7207 Images... (2012 Jul 23)

Post by BMAONE23 » Mon Jul 23, 2012 4:16 am

This Vimeo is an optional play after the APOD selection is completed

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Re: APOD: Lightning Captured at 7207 Images... (2012 Jul 23)

Post by Mactavish » Mon Jul 23, 2012 5:07 am

What is "APOD River"?

Dick Land

Re: APOD: Lightning Captured at 7207 Images... (2012 Jul 23)

Post by Dick Land » Mon Jul 23, 2012 5:31 am

Thanks for the up date of work began by Dr. Karl B. McEachron, in Pittsfield, HV labs of GE mid-last century.
As physics Major at Union College ('50-'54), I got to know several special people at GE, and I talked with Dr.McEachron many times.
He talked at Union, and showed his movies of drum camera images of lightning - in Berkshires and hitting the Empire State Bldg.
In his work on circuit breaker performance, transformer protection, and surge studies, he was the first to identify the sequence of leader formation, current surge and subsequent sequence of voltage and current surges - and measure their scale!
Lightning results from currents and voltages of the order of 10,000 amps and volts, surging down and up, thru an ionzied channel.

Most news stories are very wrong about how lightning"hits". Anyone who survives lightning was not hit, but was close enough to feel a leader trversing their body or effected by induction, that was not followed by a current surge using that leader. Ten or more leader often rise 30 m from the ground or other objects (trees, roofs, etc.) and only one is selected for the downward first current stroke. Strangely the strokes may actually select another path during the sequence. As you correctly point out, the charge sepeartion and choice of path for lightning remains a major research question!

The thunder question was settled by WJ Remillard, "the scoustics of thunder" Harvard U. 1960.
Charlie was a great friend and I knew his wife even better - a secretary in the Div. of Eng. and App. Physics for many years.

Just one of the common events we do not understand for the most part - and is really vital to our economy.
As Washington DC discovered a week ago, insuficent lightning protection costs heavily.

I must admit your are giving us a great dose of great stuff - I down loaded the "sprite"image recently.
It took decades for us to believe these were real. The magnificent vertical turbulance we call a thunder cloud is an amazing engine that is vital to maintining the voltage potential in our atmosphere, and as inegmatic as its details is the truely awsome nature.

Cheers Dick Land rland@SEAS.harvard.edu

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Re: APOD: Lightning Captured at 7207 Images... (2012 Jul 23)

Post by Guest » Mon Jul 23, 2012 6:52 am

Holy crap this is incredible!

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Re: APOD: Lightning Captured at 7207 Images... (2012 Jul 23)

Post by FLPhotoCatcher » Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:17 am

I took some lightning photos this last Saturday July 21, 2012. After sunset, a thunderstorm that was earlier severe went on to produce some awesome lightning! My lightning photos:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/mattmerritt/
The lightning seemed to hit the same structure at least 5 times! When two cloud-to-ground bolts are visible, the structure (a radio tower maybe?) is under the left one, and also under the CG bolt in the photos "Night Crawlers" and "Beaming Down".
Here's a link to some photos of the same storm from the opposite direction where you can see that the bolts hit the tall structure three times, in the series of photos: http://www.wunderground.com/wximage/and ... DITORSPICK
The bolts all SEEMED to be moving down toward the ground. Interestingly, the vertical part of the bolts usually didn't have any branches. Could that be due to the tall structure? When heading down toward relatively flat ground the 'charge gradient' is approx vertical, or even diverging away from the downward moving lightning - but when heading down toward a tall structure the 'charge gradient' is aimed (converging) toward the structure?

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Re: APOD: Lightning Captured at 7207 Images... (2012 Jul 23)

Post by FLPhotoCatcher » Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:35 am

Actually, upon looking again, the photos in my post above seem to be a good example of the upward moving leaders that start from the towers (shown in the optional play video above). Still, it is interesting that the vertical part of the bolts usually didn't have any branches.

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Re: APOD: Lightning Captured at 7207 Images... (2012 Jul 23)

Post by agulesin » Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:29 am

AFAIK, the upward strike starts when one of the downward strikes reaches the ground; (this can be clearly seen at 0:07) rather than "suddenly appearing positive spike moving up from the ground" as in the description.

Anyway, an astounding video!

Inquisitive

Re: APOD: Lightning Captured at 7207 Images... (2012 Jul 23)

Post by Inquisitive » Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:45 am

The lightning video is very interesting. However, it (apparently) only images visible light. Has anyone ever tried the same type of photography using IR or UV or other parts of the spectrum? Perhaps this would shed more "light" on the subject.

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'What did he say that time?'

Post by neufer » Mon Jul 23, 2012 11:02 am

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Marshall McLuhan: "There are ten thunders in [Finnegans] Wake. Each is a cryptogram or codified explanation of the thundering and reverberating consequences of the major technological changes in all human history. When a tribal man hears thunder, he says, 'What did he say that time?', as automatically as we say 'Gesundheit.'"

Francis Bacon's binary coded decimal cipher.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Finnegans Wake p.332 (8th of ten 100 letter THUNDER WORDS)
...................................................................................
Snip snap snoody. Noo err historyend goody. Of a lil trip trap and a big treeskooner for he put off the ketyl and they made *three* (for fie!) and if hec dont love alpy then lad you annoy me. For hanigen with hunigen still haunt ahunt to finnd their hinnigen where -

Pappappapparrassannuaragheallach-
[n]atullaghm[o]nganmacma[c]macwhackf[a]lltherdeb[b]lenonthedubblandaddydoodled

Code: Select all

"BACON cipher" starts on the #33rd of #100 letters:

. P  a  p  p  a  p  p  a  p  p
. a  r  r  a  s  s  a  n  n  u
. a  r  a  g  h  e  a  l  l  a
. c  h [N] a  t  u  l  l  a  g
. h  m [O] n  g  a  n  m  a  c
. m  a [C] m  a  c  w  h  a  c
. k  f [A] l  l  t  h  e  r  d
. e  b [B] l  e  n  o  n  t  h
. e  d  u  b  b  l  a  n  d  a
. d  d  y  d  o  o  d  l  e  d
and anruly person creeked a JEST. Gestapose to parry off cheekars
or frankfurters on the odor. Fine again, Cuoholson! Peace, O wiley
!
..................................................................................
Prob. of [BACON] in one of FW's 10 10x10 THUNDER WORD arrays: ~ 1 in 855
  • ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    . James Joyce's _Ulysses_
    ........................................................................................
    When Rutlandbaconsouthamptonshakespeare or another poet of the same
    name in the comedy of errors wrote Hamlet he was not the father of
    his own son merely but, being no more a son, he was and felt himself
    the father of all his race, the father of his own grandfather, the
    father of his unborn grandson who, by the same token, never was
    born for nature, as Mr Magee understands her, abhors perfection.

    ..............................................................
    And sir William Davenant of *Oxford's mother* with
    her cup of caNAry fOR aNy COckCANAry. Buck Mulligan,
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------
    [/size]-
Last edited by neufer on Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Art Neuendorffer

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Re: APOD: Lightning Captured at 7207 Images... (2012 Jul 23)

Post by orin stepanek » Mon Jul 23, 2012 12:47 pm

Awesome lightning vimeo! 8-) :thumb_up: The video of the lightning striking the tree was awesome as well! 8-) :thumb_up:
Orin

Smile today; tomorrow's another day!

bahdra108

Re: APOD: Lightning Captured at 7207 Images... (2012 Jul 23)

Post by bahdra108 » Mon Jul 23, 2012 2:23 pm

Astounding video of Tom A. Warner's licensing requirement.
I just wish all those distracting lightning bolts didn't get in the way.

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Re: APOD: Lightning Captured at 7207 Images... (2012 Jul 23)

Post by nstahl » Mon Jul 23, 2012 2:36 pm

Outstanding AMOD.

rootCauseBob

Re: APOD: Lightning Captured at 7207 Images... (2012 Jul 23)

Post by rootCauseBob » Mon Jul 23, 2012 3:21 pm

Lightning may be visually too fast for (accurate) human perception. However, once during a thunderstorm here in Oklahoma, where the lightning was (on average) cloud-to-cloud, I 'heard' lighting: Sitting on the front porch, a loud, moving hissing noise, lasting only long enough (~0.2 sec. ?) to notice the motion from right to left behind the house, got my attention. Of course, this was followed instantaneously by the sonic shock of the nearby bolt.

To redescribe the 'hiss': You probably know what a 'bottle rocket' firework sounds like as it shoots into the sky. Like that, except a horizontal path at a very high speed and a much longer trajectory . . .

MajorOz

Re: APOD: Lightning Captured at 7207 Images... (2012 Jul 23)

Post by MajorOz » Mon Jul 23, 2012 5:06 pm

All I got is a blank screen.

APOD has worked for me since day one.

??

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SHAZAM!

Post by neufer » Mon Jul 23, 2012 5:43 pm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Captain_Marvel_%28DC_Comics%29 wrote: Captain Marvel Abilities:
Magically bestowed aspects of various archetypal figures, including:
  • 1) Super-strength, speed, stamina and courage
    2) Physical and magical invulnerability
    3) Flight
    4) Vast wisdom and enhanced intellect
    5) Control over and emission of magic lightning
<<Captain Marvel is a comic book superhero, originally published by Fawcett Comics and later by DC Comics. Created in 1939 by artist C. C. Beck and writer Bill Parker, the character first appeared in Whiz Comics #2 (February 1940). With a premise that taps adolescent fantasy, Captain Marvel is the alter ego of Billy Batson, a youth who works as a radio news reporter and was chosen to be a champion of good by the wizard Shazam. Whenever Billy speaks the wizard's name, he is struck by a magic lightning bolt that transforms him into an adult superhero empowered with the abilities of six archetypal figures. Several friends and family members, most notably Marvel Family cohorts Mary Marvel and Captain Marvel Jr., can share Billy's power and become "Marvels" themselves.

Hailed as "The World's Mightiest Mortal" in his adventures, Captain Marvel was nicknamed "The Big Red Cheese" by arch-villain Doctor Sivana, an epithet later adopted by Captain Marvel's fans. Based on sales, Captain Marvel was the most popular superhero of the 1940s, as his Captain Marvel Adventures comic book series sold more copies than Superman and the other competing books of the time. Captain Marvel was also the first comic book superhero to be adapted to film, in a 1941 Republic Pictures serial titled Adventures of Captain Marvel.

Fawcett ceased publishing Captain Marvel-related comics in 1953, due in part to a copyright infringement suit from DC Comics alleging that Captain Marvel was a copy of Superman. In 1972, DC licensed the Marvel Family characters and returned them to publication, acquiring all rights to the characters by 1991. DC has since integrated Captain Marvel and the Marvel Family into their DC Universe, and have attempted to revive the property several times with mixed success.

Inspirations for Captain Marvel came from a number of sources. His visual appearance was modeled after that of Fred MacMurray, a popular American actor of the period., though comparisons to both Cary Grant and Jack Oakie were made as well. Fawcett Publications' founder, Wilford H. Fawcett, was nicknamed "Captain Billy," which inspired the name "Billy Batson" and Marvel's title as well. Fawcett's earliest magazine was titled Captain Billy's Whiz Bang, which inspired the title Whiz Comics. In addition, Fawcett adapted several of the elements that had made Superman, the first popular comic book superhero, popular (super strength and speed, science-fiction stories, a mild-mannered reporter alter ego), and incorporated them into Captain Marvel. Fawcett's circulation director Roscoe Kent Fawcett recalled telling the staff, "give me a Superman, only have his other identity be a 10- or 12-year-old boy rather than a man."

As a result, Captain Marvel was given a twelve-year-old boy named Billy Batson as his alter ego. In the origin story printed in Whiz Comics #2, Billy, a homeless newsboy, is led by a mysterious stranger to a secret subway tunnel. An odd subway car with no visible driver takes them past Seven statues depicting the Seven Deadly Enemies of Man (Pride, Envy, Greed, Hatred, Selfishness, Laziness and Injustice) to the lair of the wizard Shazam, who grants Billy the power to become the adult superhero Captain Marvel and shows him his life, after which a stone above Shazam's head crushes him, although his ghost says he will give advice when a brazier is lighted. In order to transform into Captain Marvel, Billy must speak the wizard's name, an acronym for the six various legendary figures who had agreed to grant aspects of themselves to a willing subject: the wisdom of Solomon; the strength of Hercules; the stamina of Atlas; the power of Zeus; the courage of Achilles; and the speed of Mercury. Speaking the word produces a bolt of magic lightning which transforms Billy into Captain Marvel; speaking the word again reverses the transformation with another bolt of lightning.

Captain Marvel wore a bright red costume with gold trim and a yellow lightning bolt insignia on the chest. The body suit originally included a partial bib front, but was changed to a one-piece skintight suit within a year. In 1994, the DC Comics version of the costume had the partial bib restored. The costume also included a white-collared cape trimmed with gold flower symbols, usually asymmetrically thrown over the left shoulder and held around his neck by a gold cord. The cape came from the ceremonial cape worn by the British nobility, photographs of which appeared in newspapers in the 1930s.

In addition to introducing the main character and his alter ego, Captain Marvel's first adventure in Whiz Comics #2 also introduced his archenemy, the evil Doctor Sivana, and found Billy Batson talking his way into a job as an on-air radio reporter. Captain Marvel was an instant success, with Whiz Comics #2 selling over 500,000 copies. By 1941, he had his own solo series, Captain Marvel Adventures, while continuing to appear in Whiz Comics as well. He also made periodic appearances in other Fawcett books, including Master Comics.
------------------------------------------------
When Billy Batson says the magic word "Shazam!" and transforms into Captain Marvel, he is granted the following powers:

S for the wisdom of Solomon: As Captain Marvel, Billy has instant access to a vast amount of scholarly knowledge, including most known languages and sciences. He has exceptional photographic recall and mental acuity allowing him to read and decipher hieroglyphics, recall everything he has ever learned and solve long mathematical equations. He also has a great understanding of divine phenomena in the mortal world. The wisdom of Solomon also provides him with counsel and advice in times of need. In early Captain Marvel stories, Solomon's power also gave Marvel the ability to hypnotize people. (Solomon is the only figure in the list not taken from Greco-Roman mythology.)

H for the strength of Hercules: Hercules' power grants Captain Marvel immense superhuman strength, making him one of DC Comics' strongest characters; he is able to easily bend steel, punch through walls, and lift massive objects, (including whole continents like South America). In the comics, this strength has evolved in parallel to that of Superman.

A for the stamina of Atlas: Using Atlas' stamina, Captain Marvel can withstand and survive most types of extreme physical assaults, and heal from them. Additionally, he does not need to eat, sleep, or breathe and can survive unaided in space when in Captain Marvel form. Pre-Crisis, it was implied in some stories to give him invulnerability.

Z for the power of Zeus: Zeus' power, besides fueling the magic thunderbolt that transforms Captain Marvel, also enhances Marvel's other physical and mental abilities, and grants him resistance against all magic spells and attacks. Marvel can use the lightning bolt as a weapon by dodging it and allowing it to strike an opponent or target. The magic lightning has several uses, such as creating apparatus, restoring damage done to Marvel, and acting as fuel for magic spells. If Billy is poisoned, for example, transforming will enable him to survive. Pre-Crisis, it was claimed in some stories to give him invulnerabilty. It can also turn other Marvels back by striking them. It aids interdimensional travel at the Rock of Eternity.

A for the courage of Achilles: This aspect gives Captain Marvel the courage of Achilles, giving him bravery and in one story it is claimed to give him fighting skills. In the Trials of Shazam! mini-series, this was changed to Achilles' near invulnerability. It also aids Captain Marvel's mental fortitude against most mental attacks.

M for the speed of Mercury: By channeling Mercury's speed, Captain Marvel can move at superhuman speeds and fly, although in older comics he could only leap great distances. This also gives Marvel the ability to fly to the Rock of Eternity by flying faster than the speed of light.
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Repeating the word "Shazam!" transforms Captain Marvel back into Billy. In Whiz Comics #11, Billy is shown to be able to summon up a ghostly version of Captain Marvel by whispering the word, and in other stories the spirit of Captain Marvel was shown talking to Billy. Captain Marvel shares his powers with Marvel Family members Mary Marvel and Captain Marvel, Jr. In pre-Crisis on Infinite Earths stories, this had no detrimental effect on the heroes' abilities, while in DC's Power of Shazam series and irregularly afterward, the Shazam power was shown to be a finite source which would be divided in half or into thirds depending upon how many Marvels were in active super-powered form at one time.

As he was transformed by magic lightning, Captain Marvel was shown in several stories to be susceptible to both high-powered magic, which can weaken or de-power him, and to significantly high voltages of electricity or lightning to revert him back to Billy Batson form. Likewise, lightning could transform Billy to Captain Marvel. The modern version of Captain Marvel is also vulnerable in the fact that he possesses the immature personality of a teenager. In one story it is shown that if the Elders strike their name from the list Captain Marvel loses his powers. If Shazam is incapitated he could not send down the lightning, though later it was shown Zeus could send it down also. It was claimed in some stories that he was invulnerable to every force in the universe, including shrinking rays.>>
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Re: APOD: Lightning Captured at 7207 Images... (2012 Jul 23)

Post by FLPhotoCatcher » Mon Jul 23, 2012 6:41 pm

@rootCauseBob
The hissing noise was probably due to lightning-produced extremely low frequency radio waves interacting with power lines to produce an audible sound. The reason it seemed to move in "a horizontal path at a very high speed" could have been due to the sound delay from the power lines being at varying distances.

Meteors can do the same thing. In 1719 astronomer Edmund Halley collected accounts of a widely-observed fireball over England. Many witnesses, wrote Halley, "[heard] it hiss as it went along, as if it had been very near at hand." Yet his own research proved the meteor was at least "60 English miles" high. Sound takes about five minutes to travel such a distance, while light can do it in a fraction of a millisecond. Halley could think of no way for sky watchers to simultaneously hear and see the meteor. Baffled, he finally dismissed the reports as "pure fantasy".

Simple materials like aluminum foil, thin wires, pine needles -- even dry or frizzy hair -- can intercept and respond to extremely low frequency radio waves.

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Re: APOD: Lightning Captured at 7207 Images... (2012 Jul 23)

Post by FloridaMike » Mon Jul 23, 2012 6:57 pm

Lightning never strikes the same place twice, because once lightning strikes, its not the same place anymore....
Certainty is an emotion. So follow your spindle neurons.

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Re: APOD: Lightning Captured at 7207 Images... (2012 Jul 23)

Post by ta152h0 » Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:20 pm

ironic that the path of least resistance is actually a torturous path thru the atmosphere. Lightning should take a basic geometry class where is shown the shortest path between two points is a line.
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Re: APOD: Lightning Captured at 7207 Images... (2012 Jul 23)

Post by BMAONE23 » Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:03 pm

agulesin wrote:AFAIK, the upward strike starts when one of the downward strikes reaches the ground; (this can be clearly seen at 0:07) rather than "suddenly appearing positive spike moving up from the ground" as in the description.

Anyway, an astounding video!
This one clearly starts from the tower and moves up

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Re: APOD: Lightning Captured at 7207 Images... (2012 Jul 23)

Post by NoelC » Tue Jul 24, 2012 1:45 am

Neat stuff, though I wonder why not post it on a site or in a way that the video can be viewed carefully frame by frame, back and forth?

I found it interesting the way the ionized path pulsated several times after the brilliant main stroke, and I would have liked to see how it ended - do they just fade out?

-Noel

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Re: APOD: Lightning Captured at 7207 Images... (2012 Jul 23)

Post by ta152h0 » Tue Jul 24, 2012 5:02 am

I just had to buy one of these

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y_Mez8e8ETs

suddemly my german shepperd will not come when he hears the buzzing sound
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Zitterbewegung!

Post by neufer » Tue Jul 24, 2012 9:16 am

ta152h0 wrote:
ironic that the path of least resistance is actually a torturous path thru the atmosphere.

Lightning should take a basic geometry class where is shown the shortest path between two points is a line.
Strong local electric fields are constantly producing
local ionization breakdowns of the air
which moves the charge along as a quasi-random walk.

It is somewhat analogous to the zitterbewegung motion of a single Dirac electron.

The Dirac electron should take a basic geometry class where is shown the shortest path between two points is a line.
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Re: APOD: Lightning Captured at 7207 Images... (2012 Jul 23)

Post by gcal » Tue Jul 24, 2012 11:30 am

I agree with everyone, that's a fascinating and educational video.

However, am I the only one who thinks that's not astronomy? Instead of APOD, it belongs on Earth Science Picture of the Day or Weather Picture of the Day. IMHO

Still, I enjoyed it and I learned a little, so I'm not actually complaining. Just sayin...

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Re: APOD: Lightning Captured at 7207 Images... (2012 Jul 23)

Post by neufer » Tue Jul 24, 2012 12:27 pm

gcal wrote:
I agree with everyone, that's a fascinating and educational video. However, am I the only one who thinks that's not astronomy? Instead of APOD, it belongs on Earth Science Picture of the Day or Weather Picture of the Day. IMHO

Still, I enjoyed it and I learned a little, so I'm not actually complaining. Just sayin...
http://astrobob.areavoices.com/2012/07/23/lightning-under-the-stars-a-moon-show-and-comet-machholz-at-dusk/ wrote: Lightning under the stars,
Posted on July 23, 2012 by astrobob

<<Came back from Colorado last night to a line of thunderheads along the northern horizon. I would have gone out earlier to shoot more lightning photos, but my dog Sammy decided to punish me for my weekend absence by running away during her walk. After a fruitless search and knowing she’d find her way back home, I sped off to a wide open horizon to watch the distant storm.

I’d hoped to see some sprites, those energetic bursts of pink light that shoot upward from thunderstorm cloud tops into the ionosphere. No luck on that, but the jagged strokes against starlight were pleasure enough.>>
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