miércoles, 9 de abril de 2014

The amazing pictures captured by a storm chaser who will travel 300 miles for lightning

A flash of lightning, its fierce tendrils joining for a split-second the heavens and the Earth, is one of the purest distillations of the awesome power of Mother Nature. So it's no wonder that ancient cultures from Greece to West Africa to the Middle East to the Indus Valley have identified the ferocious thunder bolt with their most-powerful gods.

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Majestic: Myriad thunder bolts banish the gloom in this massive electrical storm over Western Australia in this picture taken by storm chasing photographer Craig Eccles


Fearsome: The sky seems more impenetrable than the earth in this photograph capturing lightning bolts streaking across the sky over the coast of Western Australia


Dedication: Mr Eccles travels up to 300 miles in anticipation of watching a major storm along the southern region of Western Australia


Eye of the storm: Visiting remote towns and abandoned scenery, the 42-year-old photography teacher's hobby, interest and speciality takes him to unusual places


'If you hear thunder you are too close': Safety-conscious Mr Eccles tries to stay a minimum of ten miles away from the centre of the storm


Thrilling: Across the atmosphere of Earth, lightning flashes about 50 times per second, 4.3 million times a day and roughly 1.5 billion times a year


'I have seen bolts stretch for miles': If he finds himself too close to where the lightning strikes, Mr Eccles cowers in his car for safety until the storm passes overhead


Storm chaser: Mr Eccles tracks a storm's path by monitoring radars to see where it develops and to see if he can determine where it will end up


Heavenly glory: He then sets up his camera on a tripod with a 20 second exposure to capture the lightning bolts in their entirety


'I have never seen an identical storm': Mr Eccles has spent 22 years photographing electrical storms, with Australia's huge horizons offering the perfect backdrop


Dedication: 'There are not many roads, dirt roads or tracks in Western Australia that I have not been down chasing a storm,' he says


Dangers: 'Every storm is a spectacle in itself and you never know where it is going to hit so I always keep a safe distance'


Power: Lightning is a massive electrostatic discharge between the electrically charged regions within clouds or between a cloud and the surface of the Earth


Tiddler: Charged regions within the atmosphere temporarily equalise themselves through a lightning flash. It becomes as a strike if it hits the ground


Magnificent: Intra-cloud lightning like this most commonly occurs between the upper anvil portion and lower reaches of a given thunderstorm


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