What happens to rain when lightning strikes it?

Answered by Travis Wyatt, Meteorologist, National Weather Service-Pocatello, ID Any rain in the path of lightning will turn to steam. Lightning can heat the air anywhere from 18,000 degrees Fahrenheit to up to 60,000 degrees Fahrenheit. The surface of the sun is about 10,000 degrees Fahrenheit. So, lightning is extremely hot. Lightning traveling down a…

Why does lightning sometimes hit the ground and other times go from cloud to cloud?

Answered by Travis Wyatt, National Weather Service, Pocatello Office All lightning comes from thunderstorms. When a thunderstorm develops, electrical charges (either positive or negative) within the cloud separate. This creates two different electric fields between the top of the cloud and the base of the cloud. When these electric fields build up enough, there is…