The ‘Megaflash’ isn’t some sort of new movie or comic book super hero.
Rather, it’s a type of lightning flash that is worth of such a title.
Typically, a stroke of lightning will last only a fraction of a second.
But according to the Committee on Weather and Climate Extremes, one flash of lightning over Argentina on March 4th, 2019, lasted a total of 16.73 seconds!
We’ve all heard that lightning can travel as far as 10 miles from a thunderstorm.
That’s amazing enough, but on October 31, 2018, a bolt of lightning traveled much farther. Much, much farther.
According to a World Meteorological Organization press release, the world’s greatest extent for a single lightning flash that covered a horizontal distance was 440.6 miles!
That’s farther than the distance separating Terre Haute and Chattanooga, Tennessee!
These ‘Megaflashes’ aren’t being recorded by some backyard weather enthusiasts.
They’re being charted by highly sensitive mapping arrays and space-based remote sensing satellites.
Lightning has been studied by modern humans since Ben Franklin’s kite experiment in 1752.
Now, with modern capabilities, we’re learning a lot more about lightning.
However, nobody expected to see a 16 second lightning flash or a bolt travelling more than 400 miles.
That’s just amazing!
Oh, and speaking of Ben Franklin, I’ll have a little more about him and lightning in tomorrow’s article.