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On the streamer discharges emitted from the head of a person located in the vicinity of lightning strikes and their possible consequences
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences, Electricity.
2013 (English)In: Journal of Electrostatics, ISSN 0304-3886, Vol. 71, no 3, 572-576 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In this paper the currents associated with the streamer discharges generated from the head of a person located in the vicinity of a lightning strike are investigated. In the analysis the location of the person with respect to the lightning strike is selected in such a way that only a streamer burst, without the formation of a connecting leader, is emitted from the head. The current associated with these streamer bursts could exceed several hundreds of mA and may last for several hundreds of microseconds. The results of the calculation show that the passage of the streamer currents through the body of the person could create electric fields in the brain large enough to excite neurons. Depending on the strength of lightning flash and the distance to the strike point these streamer bursts can give rise to phosphenes which are a form of visual experience that occurs when the visual cortex is stimulated by electric currents.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. Vol. 71, no 3, 572-576 p.
Keyword [en]
Lightning, Humans, Streamer discharges, Phosphenes, Ball lightning
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Research subject
Engineering Science with specialization in Science of Electricity
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-200326DOI: 10.1016/j.elstat.2012.11.036ISI: 000317800000076OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-200326DiVA: diva2:623709
12th International Conference on Electrostatics
Available from: 2013-05-28 Created: 2013-05-27 Last updated: 2014-01-10Bibliographically approved

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