Welcome to the
Ball Lightning Research Center

Have you seen a ball lightning? Fill in the form and share your observation.
The Ball Lightning Research Center is gathering data to further the understanding of ball lightning phenomenon. If you are a witness to one of these rare events, please contribute!

Take the ball lightning survey

What is Ball Lightning?
Are you a witness to a Ball Lightning event? Take the survey!Ball lightning reportedly takes the form of a short-lived, glowing, floating object often the size and shape of a basketball, but it can also be golf ball sized or smaller. It is sometimes associated with thunderstorms, but unlike lightning flashes arcing between two points, which last a small fraction of a second, ball lightning reportedly lasts many seconds. There have been some reports of production of a similar phenomenon in the laboratory, but some still disagree on whether it is the same phenomenon.

Are there accounts of people seeing ball lightning?
Yes. Thanks to the web, there are many ball lightning accounts that are now being compiled. If you are a witness to a ball lightning event and would like to be included in the first scientific survey, click here.


Are there images of ball lightning?
Interesting atmospheric phenomena is occasionally captured on film or video, here is an example:

There are also some serious research attempts at propagating the phenomenon that are worth looking at:

Here is a very interesting video; a team in Brazil has cooked up a simple recipe for making similar eerie orbs of light in the lab, even getting them to bounce around for several seconds...


We highly recommend visiting the WEIRD SCIENCE PAGE database of BALL LIGHTNING REPORTS for an exhaustive list of eye witness accounts.

Copyright 2007 Ball Lightning Research Center. All rights reserved.
Revised: 04/03/07