Fireball ejection from a molten hot spot to air by localized microwaves

Vladimir Dikhtyar*, Eli Jerby

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A phenomenon of fireball ejection from hot spots in solid materials (silicon, germanium, glass, ceramics, basalt, etc.) to the atmosphere is presented. The hot spot is created in the substrate material by the microwave-drill mechanism [Jerby, Science 298, 587 (2002)SCIEAS0036-807510.1126/ science.1077062]. The vaporized drop evolved from the hot spot is blown up, and forms a stable fireball buoyant in the air. The experimental observations of fireball ejection from silicate hot spots are referred to the Abrahamson-Dinniss theory [Nature (London)NATUAS0028-0836 403, 519 (2000)10.1038/35000525] suggesting a mechanism for ball-lightning initiation in nature. The fireballs observed in our experiments tend to absorb the available microwave power entirely, similarly to the plasmon resonance effect in submicron wavelengths [Nie and Emory, Science 275, 1102 (1997)SCIEAS0036-807510.1126/science.275.5303. 1102].

Original languageEnglish
Article number045002
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2006


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