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Level 189

Optical Phenomena


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What causes a cloud to appear white?
Sunlight is scattered in all directions because of the large number of droplets in the cloud
Why does a cloud appear to be dark?
Scattering reduces the amount of light transmission. Therefore, the more the light is the reflected, the less light is available in lower layers of the cloud.
Why does the sky appear blue?
Air molecules scatter shorter wavelengths better than longer ones. Light traveling overhead is scatter to our eyes with a preference of said color.
Halo
a ring of light forms around the sun in the presence of a thin layer of cirrus clouds.
Where do Halos form?
22 degrees and sometimes at 46 degrees
Inner part will be red, outermost part will be blue
In what order will you see the colors of a halo?
refraction
a wave is bent due to a change in speed
Shorter
(Shorter/Longer) wavelengths of light travel slower through ice and, therefore, refract more.
What needs to happen for a rainbow to form?
The sun needs to be low in the sky and there needs to be rain on the opposite side of the sun.
Where does a rainbow form?
With the sun to your back, the arc is 42 degrees away from straight ahead.
The outer edge
Where is the red in a rainbow?
How doe rainbows form?
Sunlight refracts when enter in a droplet, reflects off the back, and refracts when leaving the front.
dispersion
when waves spread apart from one another
54 degrees.
Where will the second rainbow form in a double rainbow?
What is unique about a double rainbow?
The second rainbow will be in reverse color order.
How does an inferior mirage form?
Hot air at the surface refracts light upward giving a second image of a distant object
How does a superior mirage form?
Light is refracted downward by an overlying warm layer of air (inversion)
Fata Mortana
What is an example of a superior mirage?