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Again July 13, 2012

Posted by stuffilikenet in Science, Star Trek Technology.
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First Actual Photo of a Lightning Bolt Being Directed by a Laser

This lightning bolt was sent down the channel of ionized air created by a short laser burst.  “If a laser beam is intense enough, its electro-magnetic field is strong enough to rip electrons off of air molecules, creating plasma. This plasma is located along the path of the laser beam, so we can direct it wherever we want by moving a mirror. Air is composed of neutral molecules and is an insulator… [But] the plasma channel conducts electricity way better than un-ionized air, so if we set up the laser so that the filament comes near a high voltage source, the electrical energy will travel down the filament.” –George Fischer, lead scientist at the US Army’s Laser-Induced Plasma Channel (LIPC) project.  Repeating a theme:

Not that I’m on a roll with the Star Trek theme here or anything like that.  No, sir.  Not me.

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