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NASA Space Science

Lightning-made Waves In Earth's Atmosphere Leak Into Space 72

Posted by Soulskill
from the great-now-the-fithp-will-find-us dept.
TheNextCorner sends this quote from NASA: "At any given moment about 2,000 thunderstorms roll over Earth, producing some 50 flashes of lightning every second. Each lightning burst creates electromagnetic waves that begin to circle around Earth, captured between Earth's surface and a boundary about 60 miles up. Some of the waves – if they have just the right wavelength – combine, increasing in strength, to create a repeating atmospheric heartbeat known as Schumann resonance. ... NASA's Vector Electric Field Instrument aboard the U.S. Air Force's Communications/Navigation Outage Forecast System satellite has detected Schumann resonance from space. This comes as a surprise, since current models of Schumann resonance predict these waves should be caged at lower altitude, between the ground and a layer of Earth's atmosphere called the ionosphere."
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Lightning-made Waves In Earth's Atmosphere Leak Into Space

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 29, 2011 @10:20PM (#38210108)

    striking discovery

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 29, 2011 @10:21PM (#38210116)

    was a big proponent of cycles.

    (If 2 people get this, I'll be impressed ; )

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Is this just picking up an evanescent wave on a really large scale or is the radiation actually getting away from the planet? An evanescent wave is the optical equivalent of tunneling...

  • but but but (Score:3, Funny)

    by heinousjay (683506) on Tuesday November 29, 2011 @10:37PM (#38210220) Journal

    You mean atmospheric models aren't perfect predictors of atmospheric phenomena? DENIERS!

  • Leaking energy (Score:5, Interesting)

    by RightwingNutjob (1302813) on Tuesday November 29, 2011 @10:41PM (#38210246)
    Is this like other waveguide phenomena, where the first or second-order approximation says the energy vanishes exponentially within a fraction of a wavelength around the waveguide, but if you don't want your radar set (or microwave oven) to explode, you still need to invest heavily in ventilation and/or liquid cooling?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 29, 2011 @10:58PM (#38210358)

    I suppose Schumann resonance occur on similar planets as well, and should be detectable.

    • how far away is this detectable? this may be how you find other earth-like blue orbs

      until of course, they find the liquid ammonia planet that schumann resonates like nobody's business, populated by little mr. cleans and scrubbing bubbles i suppose

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by BradleyUffner (103496)

        how far away is this detectable? this may be how you find other earth-like blue orbs

        until of course, they find the liquid ammonia planet that schumann resonates like nobody's business, populated by little mr. cleans and scrubbing bubbles i suppose

        My guess is, that since it's eletromagentic, it follows the inverse-square law.

    • by riverat1 (1048260)

      I believe there is lightning on Venus, Jupiter and several other bodies in the Solar System so theoretically you could detect it there as well.

      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Electromagnetic pulses from Jupiter can be detected in the Amateur 15 Meter Band, approx 21 Mcs (No damn hertz for me. That's a car rental company. Been banging out CW since I wuz a kid, and I ain't a kid no more.)

        • by mcgrew (92797) *

          Hz was around before the car rental, iinm. And it honors a great man. MCS confused me for a minute, I remember (dimly, I do remember being annoyed that thay changed Cycles Per Second to Hz). I would have caught mCS.

  • NASA's Vector Electric Field Instrument aboard the U.S. Air Force's Communications/Navigation Outage Forecast System satellite has detected Schumann resonance from space. This comes as a surprise, since current models of Schumann resonance predict these waves should be caged at lower altitude, between the ground and a layer of Earth's atmosphere called the ionosphere.

    Darn! There goes my plans to build Tesla's wireless power plant.

  • The frequencies (Score:5, Interesting)

    by IceFoot (256699) on Wednesday November 30, 2011 @12:19AM (#38210836)

    According to Wikipedia [wikipedia.org], the resonances occur at extremely low frequencies (ELF) around 7.83 (fundamental), 14.3, 20.8, 27.3 and 33.8 Hz. That's Hertz, not megaHertz. Now, how can we tune them in? I, for one, do not own a radio that can receive those frequencies.

  • Prior Art (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward

    The so-called discovered phenomenon is precisely what Tesla was using in the 1890s to transmit power. He also said that he had bounced signals off the moon using the same method. Thunderstorms were exactly the method he used to discover that the electrical standing waves existed around the Earth- his detectors showed that the signals from lightning emitted by storms got quiter as they travelled away, then louder again, as the storm passed along the peak and trough of a wave and thus attenuated the signal in

  • Wikipedia is wrong due in part to our fundamental misunderstandings of em. The waves of energy reffered to are called bi-longitudinal em waves. The freq discussed here are not in the hertzian freq range, but much lower. More in the 6 - 8 cycles range, similar to where are brains neurochemistry operates. Nicola Tesla has been the most accurate in his observation of this phenomenon while in colorado springs, in fact his power transmission tower used resonance to generate a larger wave period while his em
    • by mcgrew (92797) *

      The freq discussed here are not in the hertzian freq range, but much lower. More in the 6 - 8 cycles range

      Hz = cps. 6-8 cycles = 6-8 Hz.

  • I wonder if this could possibly be used for exoplanet detection. It sounds like it may have a distinctive radio signal. Any radio astronomers want to reply?

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