What's that in the sky?
It is a rarely seen form of lightning confirmed only about 25 years ago: a
Recent research has shown that following a powerful positive
cloud-to-ground lightning strike,
red sprites may start as 100-meter balls of
air that shoot down from about
80-km high at 10 percent the speed of light and are
by a group of upward streaking ionized balls.
The above image, taken a few days ago above central
captured a bright red sprite, and is a candidate for the first color
image ever recorded of a sprite and aurora together.
Distant storm clouds cross the bottom of the image,
while streaks of
colorful aurora are visible in the background.
Red sprites take only a fraction of a second to occur and are best seen when
powerful thunderstorms are visible from the side.
Credit & Copyright: