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No. 67: Jan-Feb 1990

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Possible Ball Lightning In Ankara

June 14, 1988. Ankara, Turkey.

"Another phenomenon occurred on 14 June in Ankara: May and June are usually very showery and thundery in central Anatolia and this year is no exception. However, the previous few days had been unusually stormy here in Ankara, and on the 14th the second thunderstorm of the day was in progress with curtains of rain and flickers of lightning, a few kilometres away to the north-west. The storm was moving towards us and the squally wind had already begun. I was again watching the weather from my office, which is on the fifth floor, when I was suddenly distracted by the appearance of a very bright, circular flash of blue-purple light (perhaps one metre or less in diameter), which persisted for about two seconds and then silently 'popped out,' leaving behind a puff of smoke, which then drifted away. The flash of circu lar light occurred about 500 m away from me: it was about 30 m above the ground, close to, and partly behind, a tall factory chimney. There was definitely no cloud-to-earth lightning over that area at that time, but the edge of the cumulonimbus cloud, giving the storm a few kilometres away, was directly overhead."

(Kirvar, Erol; "Thunderstorm and Possible Ball Lightning in Ankara, June 1988," Weather, 44:136, 1989.)

Reference. The various forms of ball lightning are cataloged in chapter GLB in our catalog: Lightning, Auroras. For more information on this book, go to: here.

From Science Frontiers #67, JAN-FEB 1990. 1990-2000 William R. Corliss

Science Frontiers Sourcebook Project Reviewed in:


  • "A sourcebook of unexplained phenomena is therefore a valuable addition to a collection of scientific literature. William R. Corliss has provided this in the past with his source books of scientific anomalies in several subjects, and now he has provided it for astronomy. He has done an excellent job of collecting and editing a large amount of material, taken in part from scientific journals and in part from scientific reporting in the popular or semi-scientific press." -- "The Mysterious Universe: A Handbook of Astronomical Anomalies", reviwed by Thomas Gold, Cornell University, in Icarus, vol.41, 1980

  • "An interesting, systematic presentation of unusual weather [..] This book is recommended for a general audience" --"Corliss, William R., Tornados, Dark Days, Anomalous Precipitation, and Related Weather Phenomena, Sourcebook Project, 1983.", revieweed in Choice, September 1983
  • "..the science is necessarily somewhat speculative, but Corliss's symthesis is based on reputable sources." -- "Corliss, William R. (Compiler). Lightning, Auroras, Nocturnal Lights, and Related Luminous Phenomena" reviwed by Joseph M. Moran, Univ. of Wisconsin in Science Books and Films, Sep/Oct 1983

  • "Before opening the book, I set certain standards that a volume which treads into dangerous grounds grounds like this must meet. The author scrupulously met, or even exceeded those standards. Each phenomenon is exhaustively documented, with references to scientific journals [..] and extensive quotations" -- "Book Review: The moon and planets: a catalog of astronomical anomalies", The Sourcebook Project, 1985., Corliss, W. R., Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Vol. 81, no. 1 (1987), p. 24., 02/1987