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Title: A leader-return-stroke consistent macroscopic model for calculations of return stroke current and its optical and electromagnetic emissions
Authors: Cai, S 
Chen, M 
Du, Y 
Qin, Z 
Issue Date: 27-Aug-2017
Source: Journal of geophysical research. Atmospheres, 27 Aug. 2017, v. 122, no. 16, p. 8686-8704
Abstract: A downward lightning flash usually starts with a downward leader and an upward connecting leader followed by an upward return stroke. It is the preceding leader that governs the following return stroke property. Besides, the return stroke property evolves with height and time. These two aspects, however, are not well addressed in most existing return stroke models. In this paper, we present a leader-return stroke consistent model based on the time domain electric field integral equation, which is a growth and modification of Kumar's macroscopic model. The model is further extended to simulate the optical and electromagnetic emissions of a return stroke by introducing a set of equations relating the return stroke current and conductance to the optical and electromagnetic emissions. With a presumed leader initiation potential, the model can then simulate the temporal and spatial evolution of the current, charge transfer, channel size, and conductance of the return stroke, furthermore the optical and electromagnetic emissions. The model is tested with different leader initiation potentials ranging from −10 to −140 MV, resulting in different return stroke current peaks ranging from 2.6 to 209 kA with different return stroke speed peaks ranging from 0.2 to 0.8 speed of light and different optical power peaks ranging from 4.76 to 248 MW/m. The larger of the leader initiation potential, the larger of the return stroke current and speed. Both the return stroke current and speed attenuate exponentially as it propagates upward. All these results are qualitatively consistent with those reported in the literature.
Keywords: EFIE equation
Electromagnetic field
Light emission
Lightning current
Lightning return stroke
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell
Journal: Journal of geophysical research. Atmospheres 
ISSN: 2169-897X
EISSN: 2169-8996
DOI: 10.1002/2017JD026490
Rights: ©2017. The Authors. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs License, which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non-commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.
The following publication Cai, S., Chen, M., Du, Y., and Qin, Z. (2017), A leader-return-stroke consistent macroscopic model for calculations of return stroke current and its optical and electromagnetic emissions, J. Geophys. Res. Atmos., 122, 8686– 8704 is available at https://doi.org/10.1002/2017JD026490.
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