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It’s alive! Lightning zaps the Space Needle

Lightning at Space Needle
Lightning lights up Seattle’s Space Needle. (Space Needle via Twitter)

Heavy snow and lightning at the end of February? In Seattle? Something’s happening here, and weather guru Cliff Mass makes it clear.

“As predicted, a strong convergence zone has formed over Puget Sound, producing heavy precipitation and lightning,” the University of Washington professor wrote in a blog entry about Seattle’s surprise snowstorm.

“The heavy precipitation is driving the freezing/snow levels towards the surface, and there is mixed rain/snow here at the UW,” Mass said. “Did you notice how the snow was associated with the heaviest precipitation?”

Heavy, wet, fluffy snow happens when part of the atmosphere is near or just above freezing, causing snowflakes to melt partially and stick together as they fall. The result? Snowfall in Seattle that looks like a scene on a Christmas card.

Get the full story on GeekWire.

By Alan Boyle

Mastermind of Cosmic Log, contributing editor at GeekWire, author of "The Case for Pluto: How a Little Planet Made a Big Difference," president of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing. Check out "About Alan Boyle" for more fun facts.

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