Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

NASA Helps Highlight Lightning Safety Awareness Week

22.06.2005


Summertime arrives officially on June 21 in the northern hemisphere, and with it comes thunderstorms. As a result, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration named the week of June 19-25 National Lightning Safety Awareness Week.



NASA encourages summer swimmers, picnickers and others to keep an eye on the sky and stay safe during outdoor activities. NASA lightning expert Dr. Dennis Boccippio, of NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) in Huntsville, Ala., warns that lightning safety should never be taken lightly. An average of 67 people are killed by lightning each year, and thousands of dollars’ worth of property is damaged or destroyed, according to the National Weather Service.

Boccippio and the NASA lightning team study this powerful natural force year-round, using equipment on Earth and in space, to learn how lightning and severe weather interconnect, and to determine new ways to protect lives, homes and property.


NASA researchers at have created lightning maps that show where and how much lightning strikes worldwide. The maps are color coded to indicate concentrations of lightning strikes. Each frame represents average lightning activity on each day of the year. This data, compiled from space-based sensors, show how lightning strikes are not evenly distributed around the world. This data is not only important to meteorologists, but to climatologists, as well. Lightning indicates the location of large storms that release latent heat; the "fuel supply," that helps drive the Earth’s climate "engine."

The National Weather Service’s regional forecast offices in Alabama have been using NASA’s North Alabama Lightning Mapping Array since November 2001. The data help characterize thunderstorm initiation, identify weakening and strengthening storms by the change in the rate of flashes, and evaluate the trend of the flash rate to improve severe storm detection and lead-time. Understanding lightning could help improve severe storm warning lead-time by up to 50 percent and decrease the false alarm rate for non-tornado producing storms.

NASA’s lightning research is also being applied to aviation safety. NASA technology is helping aviators avoid turbulence over offshore areas, by using surface lightning measurements and combining them with satellite lightning data and other measurements.

"Knowing the precise location of lighting helps with aviation safety, and helps forecasters locate the most intense regions inside thunderstorms," said Dr. Jeffrey Halverson, Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission Outreach scientist and meteorologist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md.

Rob Gutro | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.nasa.gov/vision/earth/lookingatearth/lightning_safety2005.html
http://www.gsfc.nasa.gov

More articles from Earth Sciences:

nachricht In times of climate change: What a lake’s colour can tell about its condition
21.09.2017 | Leibniz-Institut für Gewässerökologie und Binnenfischerei (IGB)

nachricht Did marine sponges trigger the ‘Cambrian explosion’ through ‘ecosystem engineering’?
21.09.2017 | Helmholtz-Zentrum Potsdam - Deutsches GeoForschungsZentrum GFZ

All articles from Earth Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: The pyrenoid is a carbon-fixing liquid droplet

Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.

A warming planet

Im Focus: Highly precise wiring in the Cerebral Cortex

Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.

The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...

Im Focus: Tiny lasers from a gallery of whispers

New technique promises tunable laser devices

Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...

Im Focus: Ultrafast snapshots of relaxing electrons in solids

Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!

When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...

Im Focus: Quantum Sensors Decipher Magnetic Ordering in a New Semiconducting Material

For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.

Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

“Lasers in Composites Symposium” in Aachen – from Science to Application

19.09.2017 | Event News

I-ESA 2018 – Call for Papers

12.09.2017 | Event News

EMBO at Basel Life, a new conference on current and emerging life science research

06.09.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Rainbow colors reveal cell history: Uncovering β-cell heterogeneity

22.09.2017 | Life Sciences

Penn first in world to treat patient with new radiation technology

22.09.2017 | Medical Engineering

Calculating quietness

22.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>