Last week, an astronaut on the International Space Station was struck by lightning Across Europe. But unlike most lightning strikes, it is Electric explosion Spikey was not a bunch of tendrils but a large blue bubble over the continent.
The “Transient illuminated phenomena, ” Known as such high-altitude thunderstorms, the French astronaut Thomas Pesket was spotted within a time taken. This Arrange Shows lightning Different from flashing That happens In and below the storm clouds And the tendency To be much bigger.
There is a sprite, which is a very bright flash of vertical, red or bluish-green light; Jets, which tend to be blue and occur in the stratosphere; And elves, which are electromagnetic pulses of very high altitude. There are also Troll, Which is like a jet, and other magically named bright forms of lightning that occur above the clouds.
The colors of different phenomena are shaped by the atmosphere; On Earth, nitrogen sprites look red, but on Jupiter, a hydrogen-rich atmosphere Will make the sprite blue.
Since 2018, ASIM test The ISS has observed these forms of giant lightning. That’s it Danish astronaut Andreas Mogensen is the successor to the proposed previous THOR test, which caught blue jets and red sprites in a video on the Bay of Bengal in 2015.
These forms of lightning are remarkably short, so researchers had to go through Mogensen’s footage frame-by-frame to pick specific events. Similarly, the picture of Pescat of the recent fleeting bright event was taken from a long period of time in the night sky.
In a caption for New picture Posted online, Pesquet noted that the ISS is in a good position to photograph such events, as it flies over the equator, where more thunderstorms occur. This particular phenomenon has been observed somewhere in the southeast of Italy, as the figure shows.
“What’s interesting about these thunderstorms is that they were literally observed by pilots decades ago and scientists weren’t sure they really were,” he wrote. “A few years go by fast and we can make sure the elves, and the sprites are very real and can affect our climate!”
More observations like this Be sure to come And reveal more about this brilliant Natural phenomena, so amazing that they need supernatural names.