Friday, November 2, 2012

Can Lightning Be Harnessed As An Energy Source?

Not now! There are 3 reasons that we are not ready yet.

(1) Lightning doesn’t actually generate much power. Since lightning occurs in a very short burst, the amount of energy generated is only enough to power a 100-watt light bulb for 3 to 6 months.

(2) Even though every second our earth will get about 100 times of lightning strike. But the occurrences are so random and inconsistent. This makes setting up a lightning power station difficult. Some numbers of lightning strike on skyscrapers:

                   CN Tower, Toronto, Canada, about 75 lightning strikes per year.
                   Empire State Building, NY, USA, about 100 lightning strikes per year.

(3) Each lightning bolt contains 10-million to 120-million volts of power (imagine we are using 240 volt for our electronic appliances). It is technically challenge to convert such a high-voltage electrical power to the lower-voltage power that can be stored.

In the end, we are not ready yet to harness lightning power.

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