Brain Post: How Lightning Works w/ Super Slow Motion Video

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A clip from Discovery Channel’s “Raging Planet” on the subject of lightning. The camera technology has gotten to where scientists have been able to record and playback a lightning strike at over 200X slower with really cool results. – Discovery Channel

This video reveals how lightning truly works.  Negatively charged “step leaders” are scanning, searching, and forking down from a cloud in search of an upward, positively charged “positive streamer” shooting up from the ground, or a tree, or a building, etc.  When the two meet, a lightning bolt, as we know it, is formed.  The process, is spectacular to watch and even more so when slowed down 200 times.

Lightning is as hot as the sun (50,000 K or 89,540 F) as generally about as big around as your arm.

This video documents a lightning bolt being filmed in super slow motion for the first time ever in history.

how lightning works
how lightning works

For more information on how lightning works please visit:

NOVA:  How Lightning Works


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2 thoughts on “Brain Post: How Lightning Works w/ Super Slow Motion Video

  1. Outstanding! For years I thought we were dependent on “faster” camera speed to show hisory of a lightening bolt – but it’s super slow motion that got us here. I’m hoping for next – showing difference in positive lightening strike (less than 5% of time but more powerful) vs. much more common negative strike.

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