Plasmoids Wreak Havoc in Tornado Alley!

New threads (topics) in the Thunderblogs/Multimedia forum are only to be initiated by Forum Administrators. This is the place for users to comment on or discuss aspects of any individual Thunderblog or Thunderbolts multimedia post.

Moderators: MGmirkin, bboyer

Plasmoids Wreak Havoc in Tornado Alley!

Unread postby davesmith_au » Thu Oct 23, 2008 11:23 pm

October 24 ~ Guest contributor - Charles Chandler

To some, the title above might sound like science fiction. But evidence has been accumulating that tornadoes might easily be described as plasma streams. What's more, tornadoes might be preventable. ... [More...]
"Those who fail to think outside the square will always be confined within it" - Dave Smith 2007
Please visit PlasmaResources
Please visit Thunderblogs
Please visit ColumbiaDisaster
User avatar
davesmith_au
Site Admin
 
Posts: 828
Joined: Thu Mar 13, 2008 7:29 pm
Location: Adelaide, the great land of Oz

Re: Plasmoids Wreak Havoc in Tornado Alley!

Unread postby Osmosis » Fri Oct 24, 2008 12:03 am

If the magnetic field, generated in a tornado is strong enough to aid in suspending hail, it might be possible to measure it with total-field magnetometers. The challenge is to figure out how to deploy enough mags, in the right places.

Perhaps a useful project of NASA, would be to design magnetosondes and figure out ways to launch them in the right places.

Now, that might be a useful taxpayer-funded enterprise! :idea:
Osmosis
 
Posts: 409
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2008 3:52 pm
Location: San Jose, California

Re: Plasmoids Wreak Havoc in Tornado Alley!

Unread postby Osmosis » Fri Oct 24, 2008 12:12 am

More on tornadoes: Do the present storm chasers have broad-coverage communication receivers in their vehicles? If the magnetic field is in the tens-to hundreds of Gauss, instead of the normal 1/2 Gauss, the RF emission must be quite intense. Even, dare I say UV and soft x-rays? :shock: :shock: :shock:
Osmosis
 
Posts: 409
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2008 3:52 pm
Location: San Jose, California

Re: Plasmoids Wreak Havoc in Tornado Alley!

Unread postby biknewb » Sat Oct 25, 2008 2:49 am

Ever since reading an eyewitness account of someone who survived being run over by a tornado, I have been convinced of the electrical nature of them. "The inside wall of the tunnel was emitting blue light and short horizontal lightning flashed continually along the entire length of it." (Cited from memory) Several accounts like this have been published.
This can mean only one thing: a large voltage difference between the inside and the outside of the tunnel.

gerards regards
User avatar
biknewb
 
Posts: 59
Joined: Tue Mar 18, 2008 7:27 am
Location: Netherlands

Re: Plasmoids Wreak Havoc in Tornado Alley!

Unread postby Divinity » Sat Oct 25, 2008 2:57 pm

This may be a really stupid question but as the months go on, you guys are proving that all weather conditions are the effects of Electrical phenomenon. Taking this, plus volcano lava, cloud formations, undersea currents, etc., into account, does anyone think we might be living on a huge chunk of hard plasma, called the Earth??? Is that something to be seriously considered, bearing in mind the phenomenal ability for plasma to take on infinitely varied forms? Thanks.
Divinity
Guest
 

Re: Plasmoids Wreak Havoc in Tornado Alley!

Unread postby Solar » Sat Oct 25, 2008 4:19 pm

Divinity wrote:...does anyone think we might be living on a huge chunk of hard plasma, called the Earth??? Is that something to be seriously considered, bearing in mind the phenomenal ability for plasma to take on infinitely varied forms? Thanks.

There is no such thing as a "stupid question" here. From Antony Peratt's Plasma Universe the snippet entitled:
Where Plasma are Not
"Our laws of force tend to be applied in the Newtonian sense in that for every action there is an equal reaction, and yet, in the real world, where many-body gravitational effects or electrodynamic actions prevail, we do not have every action paired with an equal reaction." — Harold Aspden
User avatar
Solar
 
Posts: 1275
Joined: Mon Mar 17, 2008 3:05 am

Re: Plasmoids Wreak Havoc in Tornado Alley!

Unread postby CharlesChandler » Sat Oct 25, 2008 6:59 pm

Osmosis: To quote from the following source:

Heene, R., Stevens, R., and Slusser, B., 2008: Electromagnetic Fields Recorded in Mesocyclones. National Weather Digest, July 2008, 32:1, 35-44.

Brook (1967) also mentioned one instance where a tornado was detected at a distance of 150km by using a magnetometer, but that more observations were needed to confirm that such large charges actually occur with tornadoes.


The measurements that Heene got under one supercell were showing a fluctuation from 164 milligauss up to 200 milligauss as the storm passed overhead. There are some other data, and there is no conventional explanation for any of it, though to my knowledge, a thorough and systematic study, with an array of instruments and involving a number of different storms, including tornadic supercells, has not been done.

biknewb: The blue light was probably emissions from nitrogen atoms ionized by the strong electric field. This has been reported many times. Small-scale arc discharges within the wall of the tornado have also been reported many times, and indeed are further evidence of powerful charges.

Charles
Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and he'll spend the rest of the day sitting in a small boat, drinking beer and telling dirty jokes.

Volcanoes
Astrophysics wants its physics back.
The Electromagnetic Nature of Tornadic Supercell Thunderstorms
User avatar
CharlesChandler
 
Posts: 1786
Joined: Tue Aug 19, 2008 6:25 am
Location: Baltimore, MD, USA

Re: Plasmoids Wreak Havoc in Tornado Alley!

Unread postby Osmosis » Sun Oct 26, 2008 12:13 am

Charles,

Thanks for the information. :D

Osmosis
Osmosis
 
Posts: 409
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2008 3:52 pm
Location: San Jose, California

Re: Plasmoids Wreak Havoc in Tornado Alley!

Unread postby Osmosis » Sun Oct 26, 2008 8:54 am

A question for the enlightened weather guessers: Is the radar echo from the tornado funnel, actually coming back from the plasmoid outer surface, or wall? :?:
Osmosis
 
Posts: 409
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2008 3:52 pm
Location: San Jose, California

Re: Plasmoids Wreak Havoc in Tornado Alley!

Unread postby CharlesChandler » Sun Oct 26, 2008 10:35 am

My understanding is that scientists are having a hard time getting a good radar shot of a tornado. Most radar equipment isn't capable of seeing below about a 10 degree angle off the surface, because they start picking up ground clutter below that angle. When you figure that the base of the supercell thunderstorm is usually less than 1 km above the surface, and the closest they care to get to a tornado with mobile radar is at least 6~7 km away, they're lucky if they get a little bit of echo from top of the tornado. But it's not really enough data to distinguish the tornado from everything else that's going on around it. They'd try to get closer, but radar rigs have a nasty habit of getting hit by lightning, and considering that they cost millions of dollars, nobody is willing to take a chance on getting struck by lightning in order to get a close-up of a tornado.

The other issue is that reflectivity from a tornado is going to be slight anyway. The "condensation funnel" that makes up a tornado is actually extremely small droplets of water, which are poor radar reflectors. To get really good reflectivity, you need large concentrations of big raindrops.

Some of us are starting to think that it's going to take more exotic instrumentation to actually get decent readings close to, or inside, tornadoes. People have tried launching weather balloons near tornadoes, hoping that they would get sucked into the vortex, but to my knowledge, nobody has actually gotten any instrumentation to get drawn up into the tornado. I'm knocking around the idea of instrumenting a model airplane that could be deliberately flown into the vortex. The model plane itself would probably be ready for some more hot glue after the flight, but if we could get electric and magnetic field readings from within the tornado itself, it would tell us a lot. Besides, it would be fun! :)

-- Charles
Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and he'll spend the rest of the day sitting in a small boat, drinking beer and telling dirty jokes.

Volcanoes
Astrophysics wants its physics back.
The Electromagnetic Nature of Tornadic Supercell Thunderstorms
User avatar
CharlesChandler
 
Posts: 1786
Joined: Tue Aug 19, 2008 6:25 am
Location: Baltimore, MD, USA

Re: Plasmoids Wreak Havoc in Tornado Alley!

Unread postby Osmosis » Sun Oct 26, 2008 1:27 pm

I suppose that GMR magnetometers would be the only ones, which are small and rugged enough to survive. If you can build a small plane, which would, at least stay together, on the way in! :shock:
Osmosis
 
Posts: 409
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2008 3:52 pm
Location: San Jose, California

Re: Plasmoids Wreak Havoc in Tornado Alley!

Unread postby Osmosis » Sun Oct 26, 2008 6:07 pm

A new use for the laser, in the nice, big 747: Fly around and zap tornadoes. Perhaps lightning can be triggered, with something other than launching grounding wires, with rockets? :idea:
Osmosis
 
Posts: 409
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2008 3:52 pm
Location: San Jose, California

Re: Plasmoids Wreak Havoc in Tornado Alley!

Unread postby TalonThorn » Mon Oct 27, 2008 11:26 am

The article mentioned possibly preventing a tornado...

Do you suppose it would be as simple as setting up a line of wires on balloons attached to the ground in the path of a thunderstorm (which might even defuse a thunderstorm for that matter)?
TalonThorn
 
Posts: 50
Joined: Mon Oct 27, 2008 11:19 am
Location: Manhattan, KS

Re: Plasmoids Wreak Havoc in Tornado Alley!

Unread postby CharlesChandler » Mon Oct 27, 2008 4:27 pm

Currently, the most effective method of triggering lightning is by launching small rockets (about 1 m tall) that are capable of getting approximately 2 km off the ground, and which trail a thin wire.

Rockets.jpg
Lightning rockets, courtesy Chris Kridler

When the rocket enters a highly charged region within the cloud, the wire provides a nice path to ground, and this is sufficient to initiate the lightning process.

Triggered Lightning 1.jpg
Triggered lightning, courtesy University of Florida

The rockets are small and relatively easy to deploy. Launching a balloon would take a lot longer. Besides, supercell thunderstorms often sport a good deal of lightning around the perimeter of the storm, and these discharges continue even when the tornado is active. A balloon set up outside the storm would get used up as the edge of the storm passed over it. The charge regions that need to be diffused are in the heart of the supercell thunderstorm, and the only way to specifically target those regions would be with the rockets, as best as I can tell.

-- Charles
Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and he'll spend the rest of the day sitting in a small boat, drinking beer and telling dirty jokes.

Volcanoes
Astrophysics wants its physics back.
The Electromagnetic Nature of Tornadic Supercell Thunderstorms
User avatar
CharlesChandler
 
Posts: 1786
Joined: Tue Aug 19, 2008 6:25 am
Location: Baltimore, MD, USA

Re: Plasmoids Wreak Havoc in Tornado Alley!

Unread postby MGmirkin » Mon Oct 27, 2008 7:01 pm

CharlesChandler wrote:Image


As an aside, is it justme or is this image a good example of the difference between an arc discharge and a corona discharge (I think, though feel free to correct me if I'm wrong)?

IE, the long discrete squiggly pink bits are the lightning arcs, whereas the yellowish/greenish feathery stuff looks like a corona discharge... Hope I got that right. Pretty cool stuff!

~Michael Gmirkin
"The purpose of science is to investigate the unexplained, not to explain the uninvestigated." ~Dr. Stephen Rorke
"For every PhD there is an equal and opposite PhD." ~Gibson's law
User avatar
MGmirkin
Moderator
 
Posts: 1667
Joined: Thu Mar 13, 2008 11:00 pm
Location: Beaverton, Oregon, USA

Next

Return to Thunderblogs/Multimedia

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests