New mechanism for lightning initiation

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This is the final report of a three-year, Laboratory-Directed Research and Development (LDRD) project at the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). To distinguish radio-frequency (rf) signals generated by lightning from the electromagnetic pulse produced by a nuclear explosion, it is necessary to understand the fundamental nature of thunderstorm discharges. The recent debate surrounding the origin of transionospheric pulse pairs (TIPPs) detected by the BLACKBEARD experiment aboard the ALEXIS satellite illustrates this point. We have argued that TIPP events could originate from the upward propagating discharges recently identified by optical images taken from the ground, from airplanes, and from the space ... continued below

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9 p.

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Roussel-Dupre, R.; Buchwald, M. & Gurevich, A. October 1, 1996.

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Description

This is the final report of a three-year, Laboratory-Directed Research and Development (LDRD) project at the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). To distinguish radio-frequency (rf) signals generated by lightning from the electromagnetic pulse produced by a nuclear explosion, it is necessary to understand the fundamental nature of thunderstorm discharges. The recent debate surrounding the origin of transionospheric pulse pairs (TIPPs) detected by the BLACKBEARD experiment aboard the ALEXIS satellite illustrates this point. We have argued that TIPP events could originate from the upward propagating discharges recently identified by optical images taken from the ground, from airplanes, and from the space shuttle. In addition, the Gamma Ray Observatory (GRO) measurements of x-ray bursts originating from thunderstorms are almost certainly associated with these upward propagating discharges. When taken together, these three measurements point directly to the runaway electron mechanism as the source of the upward discharges. The primary goal of this research effort was to identify the specific role played by the runaway-air-breakdown mechanism in the general area of thunderstorm electricity and in so doing develop lightning models that predict the optical, rf, and x-ray emissions that are observable from space.

Physical Description

9 p.

Notes

OSTI as DE97000297

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  • Other Information: PBD: [1996]

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  • Other: DE97000297
  • Report No.: LA-UR--96-3329
  • Grant Number: W-7405-ENG-36
  • DOI: 10.2172/380319 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 380319
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc683790

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) is the Department of Energy (DOE) office that collects, preserves, and disseminates DOE-sponsored research and development (R&D) results that are the outcomes of R&D projects or other funded activities at DOE labs and facilities nationwide and grantees at universities and other institutions.

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  • October 1, 1996

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • July 25, 2015, 2:20 a.m.

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  • Feb. 25, 2016, 9:53 p.m.

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Roussel-Dupre, R.; Buchwald, M. & Gurevich, A. New mechanism for lightning initiation, report, October 1, 1996; New Mexico. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc683790/: accessed November 24, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.