358 Comparison of Sprite Observations with Lightning Flash Structure

Monday, 7 January 2013
Exhibit Hall 3 (Austin Convention Center)
Mark A. Stanley, New Mexico Tech, Socorro, NM; and G. Lu, W. A. Lyons, T. Ashcraft, P. Krehbiel, W. Rison, H. E. Edens, R. J. Thomas, D. E. Bruning, S. A. Cummer, and D. R. MacGorman

In 2012, three Lightning Mapping Arrays (LMAs) were installed in northern Colorado, western Texas and southwest Oklahoma as part of the DC3 campaign. This brought the total number of LMAs in the region to six and significantly increased the probability of capturing images of transient luminous events (TLEs) such as sprites over LMA flashes. Over two hundred sprite events have been captured within useful 3D range of 5 of the 6 regional LMAs. Some of these events were also captured by two or more cameras simultaneously, enabling the triangulation of sprite plan positions. A significant number of flashes which produced sprites were characterized by elevated charge heights within an anvil and were not typical of the stratiform lightning normally associated with sprites. Sprite plan positions were usually correlated with recent flash development, though some sprites were found to lie beyond the flash perimeter. The implications of these findings for how sprites are initiated and develop within the applied field of a parent lightning flash will be discussed.
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