Lightning in Space: Fact or Fiction?

In summary, there is lightning in space, but it is not the same type as the lightning we see on Earth. It is caused by interactions between Earth's atmosphere and the sun's energy, resulting in phenomena such as sprites, elves, blue jets, and red sprites. These types of lightning cannot be seen from Earth with the naked eye, but specialized cameras and instruments on satellites can capture them. While not considered dangerous for humans, lightning in space can have an impact on satellite and spacecraft operations and is still being studied for its effects on Earth's atmosphere and climate.
  • #1
muser
7
0
does a phenomena such as lightning happen in the vacuum of space? it's often talks about in sci fi, but i wonder if it actually occurs (theoretically or actually) i tried a google search which turned up nothing.
 
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  • #2
No, you do not have opposittely charged clouds which are close enough in space.
 
  • #3
Theoretically though, could anelectrical arch occurr in a vacuum?
 
  • #4
Possible, but, unlikely. The density of interstellar gas and dust is generally insufficient to allow sufficient charges to develope.
 

1. Is there lightning in space?

Yes, there is lightning in space. However, it is not the same type of lightning that we see on Earth. Lightning in space is known as "sprites" or "elves" and is caused by interactions between Earth's atmosphere and the sun's energy.

2. How is lightning formed in space?

As mentioned earlier, lightning in space is formed by interactions between Earth's atmosphere and the sun's energy. When the sun's energy reaches Earth's atmosphere, it ionizes the gases, creating a plasma. This plasma then interacts with Earth's magnetic field, causing lightning-like discharges to occur.

3. Are there different types of lightning in space?

Yes, there are different types of lightning in space. Besides sprites and elves, there are also blue jets, which are lightning-like discharges that occur above thunderstorms and reach the ionosphere. There are also red sprites, which are bright red flashes that occur above thunderstorms and reach the mesosphere.

4. Can we see lightning in space from Earth?

No, we cannot see lightning in space from Earth with the naked eye. The sprites, elves, blue jets, and red sprites occur too high up in the atmosphere for us to see from the ground. However, they can be captured by specialized cameras and instruments on satellites.

5. Is lightning in space dangerous?

Lightning in space is not considered dangerous for humans, as it occurs too high up in the atmosphere. However, it can have an impact on satellite and spacecraft operations, and it is still being studied to fully understand its effects on Earth's atmosphere and climate.

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