A bolt of lightning discharges 9.7 C in #8.9 x 10^-4# s. What is the average current during the discharge?

1 Answer
Nov 17, 2017

As charge is current times time, so #I = Q/t#


#I = 9.7/(8.9 xx 10^-4#

So #I = 1 xx 10^4#A

Nice and easy!

p.s. this is an exceptionally large current, but quite typical for lightning.

p.p.s they were correct (sensible) to state average, the current spikes to a much higher level than this and then drops exponentially. In fact it does this repeatedly as different areas of the cloud discharge. There are often 20 or more flashes within one ‘strike’