This week’s obscure English word is kugelblitz.
It’s another word English has outright stolen – it’s the German term for ‘ball lightning’. However, in its appropriated English sense it’s got a different meaning.
It’s a physics term referring to a concentration of energy so apocalyptically huge that it distorts the space-time continuum around on itself, forming a black hole. That’s a Kugelblitz. There’s nothing magic about this: Einstein’s Special Theory of relativity showed that matter and energy are equivalent, and his General Theory showed how they distorted space and time.
The thing is that you need a literally astronomical amount of energy to equate to a small amount of mass (it’s E = mc2 – where energy is equal to mass multiplied by the velocity of light squared). So to have enough energy to distort space-time into itself and create an event horizon – well, you need a word for it. And there is one. Kugelblitz.
Your challenge: write a sentence or two in the comments using this word.
Copyright © Matthew Wright 2019