blue jet

noun

: a rare form of electrical discharge that is emitted from the top of a cumulonimbus cloud during a thunderstorm as a large upward jet of blue light
Wescott and Sentman discovered that sprites are salmon-colored, and as they flew with Tobolski over the Arkansas storm that summer, they discovered that sprites were not alone above the clouds: fountains of blue light emerged directly from the clouds as well. These they named blue jets.Elwood Norris, Discover, July 1997
Blue jets, by far the rarest member of the menagerie, shoot up from cloudtops at speeds of more than 60 miles a second to heights of 30 miles.Karen Wright, Scientific American, Spring 2000

Word History

First Known Use

1994, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of blue jet was in 1994

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Cite this Entry

“Blue jet.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/blue%20jet. Accessed 17 Jun. 2024.

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