Preprint Article Version 1 This version not peer reviewed

Modeling of the Stepping Process of Negative Lightning Stepped Leaders

Version 1 : Received: 22 August 2017 / Approved: 22 August 2017 / Online: 22 August 2017 (17:28:25 CEST)

A peer-reviewed article of this Preprint also exists.

Cooray, V.; Arevalo, L. Modeling the Stepping Process of Negative Lightning Stepped Leaders. Atmosphere 2017, 8, 245. Cooray, V.; Arevalo, L. Modeling the Stepping Process of Negative Lightning Stepped Leaders. Atmosphere 2017, 8, 245.

Journal reference: Atmosphere 2017, 8, 245
DOI: 10.3390/atmos8120245

Abstract

A physical model based on the mechanism observed in experimental investigations is introduced to describe the formation of negative leader steps. Starting with a small length of a space leader located at the periphery of the negative streamer system of the stepped leader the model simulates the growth and the subsequent formation of the leader step. Based on the model, the average step length, the average step forming time and the average stepped leader propagation speed is estimated as a function of prospective return stroke peak current. The results show that the average step length and the average leader speed increases with increasing prospective return stroke current. The results also show that the speed of the stepped leader increases as it approaches the ground. For a 30 kA prospective return stroke current the average leader speed obtained is about 5 x 105 m/s and the average step length was about 10 m. The results obtained are in reasonable agreement with the experimental observations. 

Subject Areas

Lightning; Stepped leader; Space leader; Space stem

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