How Lightning Works

Lightning transfers electrons from the atmosphere to Earth. Electrons build up in clouds because wind causes them to rub together (Charging by friction).

The negative charges in the clouds push the negative charges in the ground away leaving positive charges on the surface (Charging by induction).

Once enough negative charge builds up in a cloud, it repels so strongly (second Law of Electric Charges) that it jumps through the air (an insulator) and strikes the positively charged ground or the nearest object (first Law of Electric Charges).
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If lightning strikes the rod. . the conductor carries the negative charges safely into the ground. A metal rod is attached to the highest part of the building.Lightning Rods This figure shows how a lightning rod can protect a house from a lightning strike. A conductor is connected from the metal rod to a metal plate in the ground.

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