Letter | Published:

Development of the Spark Discharge

Naturevolume 134pages736737 (1934) | Download Citation



It has recently been shown1 that in the lightning discharge a preliminary discharge from cloud to ground occurs before the passage of the main stroke in the reverse direction. The luminous intensity of this preliminary discharge is much lower than that of the succeeding main stroke and its velocity of propagation is considerably smaller. The main stroke begins at the moment the preliminary leader reaches the ground and follows the leader path in the reverse direction.

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  1. 1

    Schonland and Collens, Proc. Roy. Soc., A, 143, 654 ; 1934.

  2. 2

    Allibone and Hawley and Perry, J. Inst. Elec. Eng., November, 1934.

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  1. Research Department, Metropolitan-Vickers Electrical Co., Ltd., Trafford Park, Manchester

    • T. E. ALLIBONE
  2. University of Cape Town

    • B. F. J. SCHONLAND


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