Current Discharge From A Cloud To Ground Lightning Stroke During A Storm

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Lightning Current Discharge During A Storm


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Strings (SiPjAjk) = S7P3A32     Base Sequence = 12735     String Sequence = 12735 - 3 - 32



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The surge of a discharge current of a cloud-to-ground lightning stroke during a storm takes 1 μs to reach its peak value of 100 kA. Thereafter, it dives to zero in 99 μs. (fig 2.33). Cloud-to-ground voltage before the discharge = 400 MV. There is an average of 18 such lightning strokes per hour during the storm. Determine:
(a) The electric charge Q, discharged.
(b) The total energy W released and the average power P.
(c) The average power released in 1 hr.

The string:
(a) S7P3A32 (Force - Push).
The math:
Lightning Current Discharge
Pj Problem of interest is of type Force. This is because we are interested in the amount of charge pushed to the ground by the lightning strokes. Problems of energy, charge, voltage. work, and power are of type force.
(a) Q = area under the graph of fig 2.33.
So, Q = (1/2)100 x 10-6 x 100 x 103 = 5 C.
(b) Total energy released, W = energy stored in the electric field of the lightning stroke
Energy stored = (1/2)CV2 = (1/2)QV.
So, Energy released W = (1/2)QV = (5/2) x 4 x 102 x 106 = 109 J.
Duration of a single discharge = 100 μ secs
So, average power, P = (109)/(100 x 10-6) = 1013 Watts.
(c) Average power in 1 hour = (Total Energy x 18)/1hr = (109 x 18)/(36 x 102 secs)
So, Average power in 1 hour = 5 MW.

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