Ball lightning appears as a round moving blob 4 to 5 inches in diameter, traveling several hundred feet per second in erratic paths. Years ago, a neighbor's home was set afire from the ball lightning. Recently, an Australian scientist developed a mathematical formula to identify its genesis. Theories on how it forms are numerous including microwave radiation from thunderclouds, oxidizing aerosols and burning silicon particles formed during a lightning strike. John Lowke and his colleagues used standard mathematical equations for the motion of electrons and ions to describe the initiation of ball lightning. Lowke believes that ball lightning occurs when a stream of ions accumulates on the outside of a glass window and the electrical field on the opposite side excites air molecules to form a discharge ball
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