The term ‘Rolling Mine’ actually refers to the ball lightening,
which is lightening of ball shape. That is a real physical phenomenon
indeed, not an energy cannon in science fictions or cartoons.
The first record of ball lightening dates back to 1838, which have been
studied by scientists for over 170 years. Up to thousands of reports is
relevant to it, and there are more than 2,000 published scientific papers.
However, no one has given a reasonable explanation of this phenomenon.
It is unlikely for ball lightening to be able to strike through anything.
Ball lightening usually takes place under a thunderstorm.And there is bright light
when ball lightening happens. It has a diameter ranging from 20-50cm.
Generally it can last for several seconds, but there are also times
when it lasted for 1 to 2 minutes. More amazingly, it can slowly move
in the air on its own.
Some witnesses said that ball lightening follows metallic objects like
telephone wires. But many people said there isn’t a particular path for
it. Most of the witnesses said ball lightening moves breadthwise.
During its ephemeral life that is just several seconds long, ball lightening
keeps the same brightness, shape and size. It has been to open grounds,
confined places, and even in airplane cabins.
Some obvious signs show that ball lightening is in a close relationship
with the lightening between clouds and the ground. According to some
witnesses, it will happen or disappear after normal lightening. Ball
lightening may furiously break out or quietly vanish all of a sudden.
While there are all kinds of different opinions about the color of ball
As early as 1955, the physicists from the Soviet Union had brought up a viewpoint
that ball lightning is caused by the effects of electric-magnetic disturbance
during a thunderstorm. In 1991, Japanese scientists made a report about a series
of phenomenon that were brought forward by microwave interference, as they
had found in the experiment. Their artificial plasma
balls also showed some features of ball lightning, such as its movement
against the mainstream air and its ability to go through solids.
So what is this incredible ball lightning on earth? For many years,
ball lightning was considered as something that didn’t exist by scientists.
Until recent decades, it has been proved to be real.
In 1998, in a Spanish physicist’s opinion, the causes of the so-called
mysterious ball lightning were not mysterious at all. As he said,
this phenomenon was probably out of the constraints on luminous plasma
from the magnetic field in the process of the birth of lightning.
He established a module of magnetic fields under lightning and held the opinion
that the shape of ball lightning was exactly a magnetic web which was ‘knitted’
by the magnetic rolls of both horizontal and vertical magnetic field during
lightning. And under certain special cases, this web may turn out to be
a ball shape, while the luminous plasma would be caught by the web and ball
lightning came in this way. This kind of fireball effect would last
until the temperature of plasma dropped.
As researchers said, according to their calculation before, the fireball
can last up to 10-15s. After the plasma get cooled down, electrons
are to be constrained by atoms and there are higher electric resistance
and weaker current inside the plasma, which is followed by the collapse of
the magnetic field around. At last, fireball no longer exists.
On the basis of this theory, most ball lightning is considered to cold,
while the temperature of the part along the magnetic line of force
is rather high. Stated by researchers, that can be a good reason for
why the unheated fireball is easy to catch fire after reaching to objects.
In 2000, two Zelanian scientists put forward a new theory that the transformation
from the mineral in soil into nano pure silicon and particles of silicon compounds
can happen when normal branch-shaped lightning strikes into the ground.
These tiny particles are less than 0.1 micrometer and will enter the atmosphere
under the effects of the energy of lightning. This process is like that
when smokers spit out a smoke ring. The siliceous particles take a chain shape first
and make up d a fine ball-shaped mesh that moves along the air. The particles
in this mesh are highly active and can burn under certain situations.
While it is burning, it releases light and heat and turns into
so-called ball lightning.
The speed of ball lightning
In Oregon, the United States, there was ball lightening
that went as wind. At first, it left a hole as big as a basketball
on the screen door. After that it went directly to the basement
and brutally destroyed an old mangle calender. What a Russian teacher
had been through was even more horrible. The ball lightening with a diameter
of 80cm bounced up and down over 20 times before it disappeared.
What’s more, there is also a report from the Soviet Union saying
once the ball lightening flied into a big pot with water in it.
The water went boiling immediately and the lightening didn’t
get smothered until 10 minutes later; for another time, a football-sized
ball lightening was rolling and jumping along the street.
Through explosion, a huge hole appeared, which was half meter deep
with an one-meter-long diameter. Lastly the fire ball drilled into the ground
with a thundering sound. As some witnesses said as well, they have seen ball
lightening with the ability to go through the doors and windows,
or even the body of a plane. Scientists from New Zealand have their explanation
towards this. Most doors and windows of houses got cracks around them,
while the ball-shaped net with silicious particles is quite elastic.
It can pass anywhere that the air can go through.That is to say, if air
can go through doors and windows, so can this kind of fine mesh. And
afterwards it goes back into shape.Experiments on soil samples had been
carried out by scientists with electric discharge of lightning samples,
which showed that polymeric nano particles are indeed one of the products
of lightning and these ions oxidize in the sane speed of ball lightning.
That is to say, if air can go through doors and windows, so can this kind
of fine mesh. And afterwards it goes back into shape. Experiments on soil
samples had been carried out by scientists with electric discharge of lightning
samples, which showed that polymeric nano particles are indeed one of the
products of lightning and these ions oxidize in the sane speed of ball lightning.