Sea salt may help inhibit thunderstorm over oceans: study

2022-08-04 16:29:48Xinhua Editor : Li Yan ECNS App Download

A joint study has revealed that sea salt may weaken cloud vigor and reduce lightning over oceans, according to the paper published in the journal Nature Communications.

The known effects of thermodynamics and aerosols can well explain the thunderstorm activity over land, but little has been known about why it occurs far more than that over tropical oceans.

An international team of researchers from Wuhan University, Nanjing University in China, and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Israel analyzed data on weather, aerosols, and thunderstorm activities over Africa and its adjacent oceans between 2013 and 2017.

They found that fine aerosols significantly increased the lightning density over both oceans and land, and in contrast, coarse salt in sea spray weakened the cloud vigor and reduced lightning by 90 percent over oceans, said the paper.

The findings can help understand the different distributions of lightning over land and oceans, as well as their climatic effects, the paper added.


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