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What is lightning proportional to?

  1. Jan 14, 2016 #1
    Say that i were to hold an electric appliance
    obvious, i receive an electric shock
    What will 'how bad my injuries will be' depend on ?
    Is it potential difference, current, heating effect, .........
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 14, 2016 #2


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    Yes. Voltage, current, resistance, but many other circumstantial factors such as what part of the body, area of contact, conducivity of connection, etc.
  4. Jan 14, 2016 #3
    Could you rephrase the question and add a little more detail? Different people have different electrical resistance, so that question as phrased would be difficult to answer. Someone with really dry skin for example could possibly offer more resistance to the current so damage may be more localized. Clothing, shoes and as Dave pointed out body contact, surface area of contact, even which foot is making contact with the ground would make a difference.
  5. Jan 14, 2016 #4


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    and what does that have to do with lightning as posted in the title ??

  6. Jan 16, 2016 #5
    OOHHHH sorry 'bout that one......
  7. Jan 18, 2016 #6


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    How you hold it can make a difference. For example you are more likely to survive if the current flows from one hand, down through your body and shoes than if it flows from one hand to the other via your heart. Not least because you shoes help reduce the magnitude of the current.

    You should avoid working on "live" equipment when possible but if that's not possible then keeping one hand in your pocket might just save you (or it might not).
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