Lightning’s beauty up close

Here’s the “money shot” from the storms that moved through the Midwest yesterday. Scott Olson at Getty Images grabbed the moment the lightning hit the former Sears tower.

I’ve left it in its original size for your viewing pleasure.

CHICAGO, IL – JUNE 12: Lightning strikes the Willis Tower (formerly Sears Tower) in downtown on June 12, 2013 in Chicago, Illinois. A massive storm system with heavy rain, high winds, hail and possible tornadoes is expected to move into Illinois and much of the central part of the Midwest today. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

What are the odds of getting the shot? Apparently pretty good.

It happened in 2007…

It happened in 2010 — a three-fer

And 2011…

It’s estimated lightning strikes the tower around 50 times a year. It’s never been damaged. It’s designed to channel the energy into the ground.

Theoretically, since the lightning seeks the tallest object, we should see more pictures of tall buildings in Saint Paul and Minneapolis getting similarly tased. I’ve never seen one.

Who’s got one they’d like to share. I believe with our new system, you can post images in the comments section.

Related: The University of Wisconsin’s Space Science and Engineering Center has put a time-lapse video together from the GOES-14 satellite of yesterday’s storms.

  • andy

    If only we could harness that power……

  • kevinfromminneapolis

    Some of these are video. Which is cheating.