You do not need to be a weather forecaster to find out that a storm is coming. However, there is always a chance to escape into a safe place. Not always can everyone make it, ex. those who sailed to lakes far from the shores.

How do you know when a thunderstorm is coming?

Synoptics, equipped with radar maps and images from the lightning detection system, predict with great certainty the arrival of storms in advance. But in fact, each of us can see a storm that is just ahead, we can try to predict weather with clouds. Strolling around the city or resting in the park, we see the sky within a radius of about 20 km. We should look for shelters when we feel that it is getting stifling and when we see powerful, dark clouds (read more .

The most common model of a storm cloud is somewhat reminiscent of an anvil. It has a whirling lower part, and its base is a little wider than the middle part. In the upper part of the cloud, it seems jagged.

If we observe such a cloud from a distance, then we can notice that its upper part illuminates the sun and it is very bright and the bottom is dark gray. Lightning is often visible under it. From the place where the observer is located, and where it is not raining yet, rain can be seen under the cloud.

A very strong storm also bears a strong wind and a sudden silence following it. Although each storm is different, we usually have about 10-15 minutes from the end of this violent wind. to escape from rain and lightning.


What causes thunder and thunderstorm sounds

As the body temperature rises, its volume also increases. It’s happening in lightning it’s just lightning fast, and the temperature difference is huge. Nothing then strange that the air is rapidly increasing in volume and in order to compensate pressure is spreading to all sides at supersonic speed, with a force ten times greater than atmospheric pressure. Exceeding this speed causes a shock wave to be created, which we hear as a loud bang, crash or rumble.


Stages of a thunderstorm

Everyone knows exactly when we are dealing with a storm. Then it rains heavy rain, strong wind blows and lightning strikes. In fact, this last phenomenon defines a storm in a way. Lightning is an atmospheric discharge, which manifests itself in the form of a short flash and very loud thunder. Lightning can arise between the clouds and between the cloud and the ground. The phenomenon of atmospheric discharges is well described theoretically. This theory says that as a result of electrostatic induction, which leads to the separation of positive and negative charges, the cloud accumulates a negative charge, while the earth underneath the positive charge.

The air that is in the atmosphere at high altitudes has a much lower temperature than the air that is close to the Earth’s surface. In turn, the warm air that is at the ground is lighter and rises to the top. During such a climb, the air expands, which also cools down.

As this cooled air has a lower temperature than the surrounding, it is also heavier than it and falls back down. In contrast, this process looks different when the air also has water vapor in it. When the cooling process takes place, the water vapor also undergoes condensation, ie condenses. In the condensation process, a large amount of heat is released – the same as it was necessary to deliver water to the state of gas – the state of steam. In this way, the released heat causes the moist air to cool down more slowly, and thus it is constantly lighter than the environment. As a result of such a mechanism, during the storm, the air rises up sharply.


Thunderstorm and lightning

Lightning is one of the most spectacular phenomena in nature, and the most interesting and the most amazing element of the storm. As we have said, the storms arise as a result of the rapid rise of warm masses of humid air, making ordinary clouds (Cumulus) turn into heavy, dark storm clouds. Such clouds are located at an altitude of 10 – 16 km, and their length can reach up to 8 kilometers. The rise of warm humid air is accompanied by currents of falling masses of cold air. This leads to numerous disturbances. These swirls take away drops of water, tiny ice crystals, as well as larger ones, which are already in the form of hail. These objects collide with each other very often and powerful electrical charges are generated due to electrostatic interactions. When the amount of such a load exceeds a certain critical value, an electric discharge takes place.