TITLE

Cohesion in ball lightning

AUTHOR(S)
Gilman, J.J.
PUB. DATE
September 2003
SOURCE
Applied Physics Letters;9/15/2003, Vol. 83 Issue 11, p2283
SOURCE TYPE
Academic Journal
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
The phenomenon of ball lightning has been observed for a long time, but the nature of these luminous balls has been unknown. It is proposed here that they consist of highly excited Rydberg atoms with large polarizabilities. Thus, the cohesion of the balls comes from photon exchange forces (London dispersion forces) rather than the more usual electron exchange (chemical) forces. The cohesion in plasmas generated at the back faces of detonating explosives (Cook’s plasmas) has a similar basis. Numerical estimates are given to justify this interpretation. © 2003 American Institute of Physics.
ACCESSION #
10774594

 

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