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Lightning basics - 3. Types of thunder


Heat lightning

Strong sunlight in midsummer produces hot air near the surface of the ground. This can result in updrafts which produce heat lightning.

Frontal thunderstorms


A frontal thunderstorm is a type of lightning that is produced when a warm air mass is pushed upwards by a cold air mass (cold front thunderstorm), or when warm air rises along a lower layer of cold air (warm front thunderstorm).

These thunderstorms can occur at any time and place and over a wide area (usually several tens of kilometers, occasionally up to 100 kilometers), where there is very little geographical change or seasonal fluctuation. They may occur singly, or overlap with summer or winter thunderstorms. The majority of thunderstorms that occur at sea are frontal thunderstorms.

cold front thunderstorm warm front thunderstorm

Cyclonic thunderstorms

Cyclonic thunderstorms happen when there are updrafts in areas of low atmospheric pressure and near the center of typhoons and the like.

Volcanic lightning

Volcanic lightning occurs during volcanic eruptions, near the mouths of volcanoes.

Friction caused by the ash and stones thrown up by the eruption is said to cause negative and positive ions to separate, resulting in lightning.

Lightning basics


1. How does lightning happen?

2. Conditions for lightning

●3. Types of thunder

4. Structure of thunderclouds


5. Conditions for lightning

6. How to protect yourself from lightning

7. The scale of lightning and lightning damage (power lines)