A photographer captured a stunning time-lapse image of more than 100 lightning bolts during a violent thunderstorm in Turkey.
Astrophotographer Uğur Ikizler Create electrified image By combining shots of the sky near his home in the coastal city of Mudanya. The individual images were collected over a 50-minute period around midnight on June 16 – which means that, on average, there was a lightning bolt every 30 seconds.
“Each one of them is beautiful, but when I collected all the lightning bolts into one frame, it was a frightening sight,” Ekizler told Live Science in an email. He added that Thunderstorm was “a wonderful visual feast”.
At least three different types of lightning appear in the picture—cloud to cloud, where the bolt begins and ends in clouds; from the cloud to the ground, as the bolt hits the ground; and clouds to water, as the bolts strike the water rather than the ground, according to Spaceweather.com.
Related: What is the longest lightning bolt ever recorded?
It is not uncommon for there to be a lot of lightning strikes during a single thunderstorm. Globally, there are 1.4 billion lightning strikes each year, or about 3 million lightning strikes each day. That works out as 44 lightning bolts every second, according to UK confluence office.
Each screw will likely have a voltage of between 100 million and 1 billion volts, plus billions of amperes in current. This much energy can raise the temperature of the surrounding air between 18,000°F (10,000°C) and 60,000°F (33,000°C), according to NOAA. (For context, the Sun’s surface only reaches 10,000 degrees Fahrenheit (5,500 degrees Celsius), according to sister site Live Science. Space.com.)
The new image shows the iconic zigzag shape of lightning bolts. Researchers aren’t entirely sure what causes these quirky shapes, but a 2022 study suggested that the distinctive patterns are caused by a highly conductive form of oxygen. It builds up irregularly as the bolt travels toward the ground.
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