Dramatic Lightning
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Dramatic Lightning

February 13, 2013
Spectacular, powerful and sometimes deadly, lightning is one of the most common weather phenomena. It has been estimated that lightning strikes the Earth about 100 times every second. Lightning is generated in cumulonimbus clouds, which have a negative electrical charge at the base and a positive charge at cloud top. Scientists are not yet certain how clouds get these charges, although they know that they're carried by water droplets and ice crystals. Research on lightning and other atmospheric weather phenomena is performed at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and other federal agencies to provide facilities and support for a wide range of studies in the atmospheric and related sciences. NCAR is managed by the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR), a nonprofit consortium of universities that grants Ph.D.s in fields related to atmospheric science. UCAR's primary function is managing NCAR. To learn more, visit the NCAR website, Here. Credit: ©University Corporation for Atmospheric Research

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