A lightning bolt is nature's way of balancing charge distribution. We commonly observe this phenomenon during thunderstorms, but it can also occur during volcanic eruptions! The Taal Volcano, located about 37 miles south of Manila, began erupting Sunday. As night fell, a rare display of volcanic lightning was visible and the video is mesmerizing...

Volcanic activity produces lightning-friendly conditions in multiple ways. Enormous quantities of pulverized material and gas gets ejected into the atmosphere with explosive power creating a dense plume of highly charged particles. The ash density and constant motion within the volcanic plume, continually produces electrostatic ionization, resulting in very powerful and very frequent flashes attempting to neutralize itself. Due to the extensive solid material (ash) content, unlike the water rich charge generating zones of a normal thundercloud, it is often called a dirty thunderstorm.