fbpx
  Previous   Next
HomeNationGlobal Lightning Activity Fell Nearly 8% During Covid Lockdowns In 2020

Global Lightning Activity Fell Nearly 8% During Covid Lockdowns In 2020

Global lightning activity dropped almost 8 per cent during the 2020 Covid-19 lockdowns, according to new research.

According to researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the cause of the drop appears to be a connection between lightning and air pollution.

“When Covid-19 led to lockdowns, there was a reduction in pollution everywhere, said Yakun Liu, a meteorological researcher from the Institute.

Less pollution means fewer microscopic particles hazing the sky and serving as points of nucleation for water droplets and ice crystals, Liu explained.

Fewer tiny ice crystals in storm clouds means fewer collisions of crystals, which Liu and other researchers believed to be one of the ways thunderheads generate electrical charges that lead to lightning.

The three-month lockdown period from March to May in 2020, proved to be a valuable opportunity to test this idea by studying global lightning and aerosol data.

To measure the lightning activity the team used data from the Global Lightning Detection Network (GLD 360) and the World Wide Lightning Location Network (WWLLN).

For the aerosols they looked at satellite data showing the amount of air pollution in the atmosphere, measured as Aerosol Optical Depth, which is based on the way aerosols absorb and reflect light.

Comparing the years 2018 to 2021, season to season, the researchers found a significant drop in lightning and aerosols in most places during the lockdown, as well as a significant drop in lightning activity worldwide.

They presented their findings at the American Geophysical Union meeting in New Orleans last month, showing that there was a 7.6 per cent decrease in lightning strikes.

One measure studying intracloud flashes also measured 19 per cent fewer flashes in March 2020 to May 2020 when compared to the average number of flashes across the same period in 2018, 2019 and 2021.

They also found aerosol pollution and lightning generally followed the same pattern or tracked each other over Africa, Europe, Asia and the maritime countries of Southeast Asia, and smaller increases over much of the Americas.

More News

Congress Yukt BJP, Says Shashi Tharoor After RPN Singh Leaves Party

Aday after Congress’s star campaigner for the Uttar Pradesh election, RPN Singh, joined the Bharatiya Janata Party, senior leader of the party and Lok...

It Doesn’t Matter If Someone Leaves Or Join Congress, Says Rajasthan CM Ashok Gehlot

Congress is a movement having a history of 135 years and some leaders leaving the party does not make any difference, Rajasthan Chief Minister...

NBA: Minnesota Timberwolves Beat Portland Trail Blazers 109-107

Anthony Edwards had 40 points and the Minnesota Timberwolves rallied in the fourth quarter to beat the Portland Trail Blazers 109-107 on Tuesday night. Karl-Anthony...

RELATED NEWS

India Celebrates 73rd Republic Day, First Woman Rafale Fighter Jet Pilot Part of IAF Tableau

India is celebrating the 73rd Republic Day today as part of the Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav commemorating 75 years of independence. The Republic Day...

4 Injured In Srinagar Grenade Blast Ahead of Republic Day Celebration

A day ahead of Republic Day celebrations, terrorists on Tuesday threw a grenade, targetting security personnel in Srinagar and resulting in injuries to four...

New Zealand To Install 5,000 Air Cleaners For Schools To Prevent Covid

Education Minister Chris Hipkins on Tuesday announced 5,000 air cleaners have been ordered for New Zealand schools. "As we know, along with vaccination, testing, good...