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The contribution of sprites to the global atmospheric electric circuit


The global static electric field in the global atmospheric electric circuit resulting from mesospheric sprite discharges is inferred from a coupled model for the global static and dynamic electric fields derived from Maxwell’s equations. It is found that the global atmospheric electric field from individual sprites is 44 mV/m, which can be measured with conventional ULF/ELF radio wave antennas at frequencies 4 Hz.


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Correspondence to Martin Füllekrug.

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Füllekrug, M., Rycroft, M.J. The contribution of sprites to the global atmospheric electric circuit. Earth Planet Sp 58, 1193–1196 (2006).

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Key words

  • Sprites
  • lightning
  • global circuit