For long time, It has been a great mystery how electricity appears in the atmosphere. But, recent research says that atmospheric water vapor can turn into electrical charge. They are calling it hygroelectricity which means humid electricity. Now, it is realized that hygroelectricity is one kind of static electricity which appears on water droplets and can be moved from droplets to small dust particles. It is a common phenomenon in the earth's atmosphere. Hygroelectric charge exists in thunderstorms volcanic eruptions and some  dust storms which creates lightning. Once, scientists believed that water droplets in the atmosphere were electrically neutral and remain same even after coming into contact with the electrical charges on dust particles and droplets of other liquids. But, recent research says that an electrical charge can be picked up by water in the atmosphere indeed.

Scientists had been charmed by the idea of harnessing the power of thunderstorms for long time. After laboratory experiments, scientists observed the simulated water's contact with dust particles in the air. In their experiment, tiny particles of silica and aluminum phosphate were used. It has been observed that  during high humidity, silica gains more negatively charged and aluminum phosphate gains more positively charged. A high level of water vapor in the air creates high humidity. During steamy summer days, this vapor can condense and appears as fog on windows of air-conditioned building and cars.

Scientists and researchers are hoping that just like the solar cells which collect the sunlight to produce   electricity, it will also be possible to develop collectors in order to capture hygroelectricity and distribute it to homes and businesses. Just like solar cells work effectively in sunny areas of the world, hygroelectrical panels would work more effectively in areas having high humidity.They propose that hygroelectrical panels can be installed on top of buildings in the area where thunderstorms are most frequent. These panels could drain electricity out of the air and prohibit the building of electrical charge which is released in lightning. Now, scientists and researchers are comprehensively experimenting as well as researching the greatest potential for use in capturing atmospheric electricity and preventing lightning strikes. So, we can say that hygroelectricity contains a good prospect as an alternative energy resource.


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