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The mysteries of electricity... do I understand this correctly? (w/ pictures) Answered

Ok, is this diagram correct? Am I understanding all this right?

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cyberpagemanBest Answer (author)2009-10-31

 Your diagram looks good to me, but I checked wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lightening) If you read it, you'll see it's more complicated.  You have a good general idea, though.

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Goodhart (author)2009-11-01
As has been noted here,  ground is 0 v (or negative, in a DC circuit) and, as also has been noted, it's more complicated then this.  
#1:  voltage flows from negative to positive
#2: Current flows from +  to  - 
#3: static electricity is weird

That last one is kind of jokingly put up, but it really is.   I once placed a tiny fragment of tissue paper on the tip of my finger and brought it near a recently turned off TV.  What you expect to happen?    You're probably half right :-)   it did jump off my finger to the tv tube.   Weirdly enough though, it started to oscillate back and forth between the tv and my finger, until the static was fully discharged.

This is why the old "lightning never strikes the same place twice" is so wrong.   If you filmed it, and slowed it down, you'd see several strikes (and if you slowed it enough, some of those strikes are not coming downward, either ;-) 
 

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nepheron (author)Goodhart2009-11-02

- goes to +, I'm absolutely sure of it.

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Goodhart (author)nepheron2009-11-02
Yes, voltage flows from ground to positive,  but current flows from positive to negative.
 

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nepheron (author)Goodhart2009-11-02

Check this out, it tells you how to build a static flying thing with tinsel, PVC, and a bit of fleece.

http://www.sciencebob.com/experiments/videos/video-static_orb.php

I made one and it really works! Just like in the video!

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lemonie (author)2009-10-31

The ground is usually taken to be 0V. But (through various processes) clods become charged and at a few million volts discharge through the atmosphere. Not necessarily to the ground though.

L

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