Anything time lapse outer space is super impressive, capturing beautiful and terrifying natural phenomenons that you’d never to get experience in real life; because it’s space and most of us aren’t astronauts.
This new video from the Geostationary Lightning Mapper (GLM) of a weather satellite in space was captured on May 9, and it displays flashes of lightning above North and South America. It also zooms in on a line of storms near Central America.
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The purpose of the mapper is to give forecasters indications as of when storms are forming, their movements, and if they’re increasing in size and becoming more dangerous for people and their properties.
According to the NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) “rapid increases of lightning are a signal that a storm may strengthen quickly and could produce severe weather.” The mapper, along with other satellites and radars, can also help issue flood and flash flood warnings sooner to prevent as much damage as possible.
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Mashable reports that astronauts and cosmonauts are able to see thunderstorms from 250 miles above the planet’s surface, and that it’s common for them to take time-lapse videos featuring these beautiful and rare sights.