Numerical Computation of Electric Field and Charge Structure of a Typical Tropical Thunderstorm

J.A. Falade, S. O. Adesanya


Cloud charge dynamics are usually determined from ground measurements. Where in-situ cloud measurements are available they sometimes modify the cloud structure; and this can be expensive, and merely diagnostic at best. In this work, Poisson integral formula is simplified by adapting the Bessel functions to obtain the cascaded potential gradients at any point on ground as a result of charge distribution in cylindrical volumes. The model represents the cloud charges as a vertical sequence of axially aligned, uniformly-charged densities of cylindrical disk(slices), The resulting expressions for the potential gradient is solved numerically as a functions of  normalized vertical and horizontal distances to model the vertical electric field and potential profiles below a typical thunderstorm.

Keywords: Electric field, Bessel functions, Charge structure, Cylindrical charge model, Lower positive charge center.

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ISSN (Paper)2224-719X ISSN (Online)2225-0638

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