pure and applied geophysics

, Volume 97, Issue 1, pp 234–240 | Cite as

Genesis of lightning potentials

  • Angelo Montani


The generation of very high atmospheric potentials is ascribed to the sudden separation of a cloud, or portion of it, into an upper and lower section, substantially, of opposite polarities. Said abrupt cut being, the mechanical effect produced by local wind gusts. The related mathematical analysis shows how “theoretically infinite” voltage spikes may be generated as forced electrical transients when a cloud separates into two sections.


Mathematical Analysis Opposite Polarity Mechanical Effect Lower Section Local Wind 


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Copyright information

© Birkhäuser Verlag 1972

Authors and Affiliations

  • Angelo Montani
    • 1
  1. 1.Re-entry and Environmental Systems DivisionGeneral Electric CompanyPhiladelphiaU.S.A.

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