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PostPosted: Mon Aug 11, 2014 7:30 pm 
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Alan_L wrote:
Didn't the first incandescent light bulbs used carbonized bamboo filaments?


Yes, but it was from a giant bamboo so they had a bit of trouble fitting it

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 12:49 am 
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I think the relevant question is: which is more conductive; silicon carbide infused bamboo, or tree sapwood? I'm supposing the latter. Water with electrolytes can be very conductive. Silicon carbide is used to make ceramics, which are not that conductive. Silicon dioxide, btw, is what is used to make semiconductors.

From wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silicon_carbide):
Quote:
The earliest electrical application of SiC (silicon carbide) was in lightning arresters in electric power systems. These devices must exhibit high resistance until the voltage across them reaches a certain threshold VT, at which point their resistance must drop to a lower level and maintain this level until the applied voltage drops below VT.


As I understand this, what would happen in such a case is that the resistance of the SiC derived device would be 'infinite' up to a certain high voltage, at which point it would then reduce to 'zero' creating a short circuit pathway to ground.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 9:41 am 
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SiC is widely used in high-temperature/high-voltage semiconductor electronics. And lightning can be counted as extremely high voltage electronics. :mrgreen:

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 12:15 pm 
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Tarzanus wrote:
SiC is widely used in high-temperature/high-voltage semiconductor electronics. And lightning can be counted as extremely high voltage electronics. :mrgreen:


Electricity is like water; it will seek the path of least resistance. A high resistance circuit like a lightening arrester that is not wired in parallel with a lower resistance circuit will not function as a current conduit when a high breakdown voltage is present. In the context we are talking, bamboo and trees are not 'wired' in parallel, so lightning will seek out and follow the path of least resistance (which IMO would be trees).


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 3:42 pm 
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Now I find my pool is not allowing swimmers even when not a cloud in the sky, but when a thunderstorm might be within five miles of the pool. Five miles. In Florida, that's pretty much every summer day they get to not open the pool. So I googled some more. Found this....

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2004/06/0623_040623_lightningfacts_2.html
A moving thunderstorm also gathers positively charged particles along the ground that travel with the storm. As the differences in charges continue to increase, positively charged particles rise up tall objects such as trees, houses, and telephone poles—and people.

• The negatively charged bottom part of the storm sends out an invisible charge toward the ground. When the charge gets close to the ground, it is attracted by all the positively charged objects, and a channel develops. The subsequent electrical transfer in the channel is lightning.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 6:52 pm 
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bambambooboo wrote:
http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2004/06/0623_040623_lightningfacts_2.html
A moving thunderstorm also gathers positively charged particles along the ground that travel with the storm. As the differences in charges continue to increase, positively charged particles rise up tall objects such as trees, houses, and telephone poles—and people.

• The negatively charged bottom part of the storm sends out an invisible charge toward the ground. When the charge gets close to the ground, it is attracted by all the positively charged objects, and a channel develops. The subsequent electrical transfer in the channel is lightning.


Exactly. Storm clouds induce current potential on earth, and objects with higher conductivity (inverse of resistance) are more likely to become lightning paths. That's why they make lightning rods out of steel rather than plastic.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 8:06 pm 
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But there seems two major variables here, conductivity and proximity.

So even if a 55 foot tree might be more conductive, would an 85 foot bamboo take the hit?

I get that my riding a lightning rod up a growing bamboo was a bit silly, and maybe not up to code--though I do plan on selling rides--but also I'd be curious to know if anyone has info on what lightning might do to the rhizome system. When I lost one of the pines I also lost a baby orange tree nearby, probably from where the lightning went into the root systems as I don't see any damage to the exterior of the orange.

So ideally I'd plant taller boo around the property near the larger pines, with my hope being that even if they took a hit they'd grow back the following season, thus, not killing the boo while saving the pines. And again, not that this property might ever get hit again, but I happened to be looking out the window when that one did hit so I guess it stuck with me.

I have post traumatic lightning disorder.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 8:39 pm 
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bambambooboo wrote:
So even if a 55 foot tree might be more conductive, would an 85 foot bamboo take the hit?


Very good question. I'm too dumb to know...


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 8:43 pm 
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bambambooboo wrote:
And again, not that this property might ever get hit again, but I happened to be looking out the window when that one did hit so I guess it stuck with me.


If only you had said: "it 'struck' with me"...


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 13, 2014 7:52 pm 
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oobmab wrote:
bambambooboo wrote:
So even if a 55 foot tree might be more conductive, would an 85 foot bamboo take the hit?


Very good question. I'm too dumb to know...


Hey, you probably know more about lightning than even Ben Franklin.

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 13, 2014 11:35 pm 
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bambambooboo wrote:

So even if a 55 foot tree might be more conductive, would an 85 foot bamboo take the hit?


Whatever object (or being) in area of discharge is most conductive to the charge will likely be the 'ground path'. Height is one factor, level of conductivity is another. And there may be some other factor(s) that I am leaving out because this is not my area of expertise either. Come to think about it, I have no area of expertise.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 14, 2014 12:42 am 
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I have no expertise, but I do have experience. The time lightening struck at my house, it went for the cluster of 5 foot tall shepherd's hooks poked in the ground under a 35' elm tree, in a row of 10 similarly sized elm trees, next to a two story house. Snaked right down and slammed those hooks... we were clustered in a doorway 50' away, and its an experience I don't ever wish to repeat.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 15, 2014 6:29 pm 
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I can't even imagine what that must have been like! Only once has a lightning strike been close to my house -- where the flash and thunderclap were simultaneous -- and it was scary! Never did find out what the strike hit, or how close/far it actually was from the house.

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PostPosted: Sun Aug 17, 2014 3:56 pm 
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Yeah, that's the experience of it, you don't get to count one one thousands, the boom flash being all in one. I happened to be looking out the front window at the time. It lit up so brightly that I thought the front gardens might have taken the hit and didn't see until the next day that the trees out back got it.

Here's some pics of that....

Image

Image

Image

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