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elve

[ elv ]
/ ɛlv /
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noun

an extremely dim, flattened, expanding, reddish glow briefly seen over a thunderstorm, due to electromagnetic pulses from intense lightning.

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Origin of elve

First recorded in 1990–95; e(mission of) l(ight and) v(ery low-frequency perturbations from) e(lectromagnetic pulse sources)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

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Scientific definitions for elve

elve
[ ĕlv ]

An extremely dim, short-lived, expanding disk of reddish light above thunderstorms, believed to be caused by electromagnetic pulses from intense lightning in the lower ionosphere. Elves last less than a second and can be as wide as 500 km (310 mi) in diameter.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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