TERRAPUB Earth, Planets and Space

Earth Planets Space, Vol. 58 (No. 9), pp. 1193-1196, 2006

The contribution of sprites to the global atmospheric electric circuit

Martin Füllekrug1 and Michael J. Rycroft2

1Centre for Space, Atmospheric and Oceanic Science, University of Bath, Bath BA2 7AY, U.K.
2CAESAR Consultancy, 35 Millington Road, Cambridge CB3 9HW, U.K.

(Received September 20, 2005; Revised March 26, 2006; Accepted April 5, 2006; Online published September 29, 2006)

Abstract: 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.
Key words: Sprites, lightning, global circuit.

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