Terrestrial and Astronomical Lightning

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Scientific Paper
Title Terrestrial and Astronomical Lightning
Author(s) Eric W Crew
Keywords astronomical lightning, ESD, filaments, lightning
Published 2000
Journal Electric Spacecraft Journal
Number 30
Pages 22-25


An atmospheric electrical discharge, such as a reasonably straight stroke of lightning, produces a longitudinal jet, and the magnetic field of the current thus produced causes this to be filamentary. Most of the characteristics of violent and sudden events in astronomy can be explained simply in terms of well-established laws of physics if electrical discharges, similar to lightning, occur in the atmosphere of stars and galaxies. Careful examination of the evidence for electrical discharges in astronomy shows that these almost certainly do occur, and therefore charging does take place. This was first suggested by C. E. R. Bruce in 1941.