‘Blue Jets’ discovered by the International Space Station

'Blue Jets' discovered by the International Space Station

Using special equipment installed at the International Space Station (ISS), the team of scientists has achieved the rare feat of a “blue jet” that is created in a specific type of lightning storm clouds and goes into space. The observation is described in an published article Natural, Last Wednesday (20).

As the study’s authors explain, blue jets are “lightning strikes similar to several hundred milliseconds that propagate in cones as they spread from the top of storm clouds to the stratosphere.”

According to the scientists, they found at least five blue rays shooting from the top of the clouds, each lasting between 10 and 20 milliseconds and could reach altitudes of up to 50 km in the stratosphere. The animation below, created by the European Space Agency (ESA), shows how this phenomenon occurs. See:

These blue jets were spotted in February 2019 during a storm over the island of Nuru in the Pacific Ocean. They are formed from an “electrical breakdown” at the junction of two clouds with different charges, while blue is the effect of stratospheric nitrogen.

Invisible from the surface of the earth

Because of the distance and the storm clouds that cover them, blue jets cannot be seen from the Earth’s surface. In this particular case, it was recorded with the equipment of the European Space Atmospheric Reaction Surveillance (ASIM) at the space station.

According to astronomers, the study of this type of phenomenon, also known as light emission and very low frequency disturbances by electromagnetic pulse (Elves) sources, helps to understand how it propagates. Radio waves, Interfering with communications, refers to how lightning affects concentration Greenhouse effect In the atmosphere.

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