Famous Lichtenberg Figure/Tree of Fire (ca. 1960)


The small (ca. 1”x1”) piece of lead-cerium glass pictured on the right was charged by exposing it for 20 seconds to a 10µA current of 1.5 MeV electrons from an accelerator at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. When the block of glass was discharged, a time-lapse photograph was taken of the “tree of fire.” 

The photograph was so striking that it was used on the cover of the March 2, 1962 issue of Science

Kindly donated by Phil Rudolph

Lichtenberg Figures               Museum Directory

Last updated: 05/10/11
Copyright 1999, Oak Ridge Associated Universities