Ball lightning was first described in 106 BC in ancient Rome. They were described as fiery birds dropping red-hot coals on the ground. In the Middle Ages, phenomena were recorded on paper in Portugal and France. Alchemists, scientists of the time, tried to find a way to have power over the souls of the dead, considering ball lightning as such.
Ball lightning, in the scientific interpretation, is considered an independent type of lightning, representing a spherical phenomenon in the form of a fireball. It is assumed that its size is 10-20 cm in diameter. The color varies from blue to white. A rare color is black. At the same time, this phenomenon is capable of changing its coloration.
Scientists still can not say exactly what the temperature of the ball lightning. It is assumed the value of 100-10000c. Interestingly, the ball lightning can explode by vaporizing the water nearby. If there are objects of glass or iron nearby, they will turn into melted material after such an explosion.
Once an eyewitness recorded the presence of a ball lightning in a house when it fell into a 16-liter barrel of water and simply boiled the liquid. After the object disappeared, the water remained hot for 20 minutes.
When does the phenomenon occur?
Like all lightning, this object is the product of a thunderstorm. However, sometimes it was possible to record its appearance in cloudless weather. It is capable of penetrating even into closed rooms through electrical wires and sockets.
Black ball lightning
Near the city of Pskov on the Devil’s Glade, it is quite often possible to observe the phenomenon of black. It all started when the Tunguska meteorite fell in Siberia. Scientists put sensors to study the phenomenon, but to no avail. They were constantly being melted by ball lightning.
What had happened before?
Science for a long time denied the fact of the existence of ball lightning, considering the phenomenon an optical illusion. Only in the 19th century was it possible to systematize the information. Skeptical scientists remained. After all, the mystery of ball lightning has not yet been solved. New data appear, not at all helpful to the hard work of scientists.
What is “ball lightning?”
There is an assumption that the object consists of gas or plasma. The next question for physics is, “where does the phenomenon come from?” The volume of lightning is unclear. Where does the energy disappear to? If the ball was spending it on radiation, the luminosity would cease in 1-2 hours. What is inside the fireball? There are more questions than answers…