Learn about the reasons why the sun’s disc can be red at times


At sunrise or sunset, the sun turns red, and the sky is colored with orange, crimson, and perhaps even purple tones, so do you know the interpretation of this charming scene, first remember to never look at the sun directly! And don’t even think about trying to look at her through binoculars or telescopes, as this may destroy your eyesight and cause you permanent blindness.

As for this enchanting scene, the password is light scattering. The whole thing goes back to the basic rules of physics and “the optical properties of sunlight that passes through the atmosphere,” says Edward Plumer, an astronomer at the Royal Museums of Greenwich in Britain, to “BBC. “.

First, we need to understand the nature of light, which consists of all the colors of the visible light spectrum (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet).

“It’s about the scattering of sunlight,” says Blumer, “and this scattering doesn’t happen evenly.” Each color has a different wavelength, and this is what makes each color look like the image we see.

For example, the wavelength of violet is the shortest, while the wavelength of red is the longest.

The second step is to understand our atmosphere, that is, the layers of gases surrounding our planet that make life possible on it, including the oxygen we breathe.

As sunlight passes through the different layers of the atmosphere – which contain gases of varying density – it bends and refracts as if it were passing through a prism.

There are also particles suspended in the atmosphere, which in turn cause the refracted light to bounce and reflect.

When the sun rises or sets, its rays collide with the upper layers of the atmosphere at a certain angle, and this is where the “magic” begins.

Once sunlight penetrates these upper layers, the blue wavelengths are refracted and reflected rather than absorbed.

“When the sun is low on the horizon, all the blues and greens are dispersed, while the orange and red colors reach us,” says Blumer.

This happens because the short wavelengths of violet and blue are scattered more than the long wavelengths of orange and red. The result is a brilliant array of colors in the sky, and the sun has never changed.

Depending on where you are in the world, your sky may appear more dazzling at this moment, due to local weather conditions.

“Clouds of dust, smoke, and other objects may affect the image you see in the sky,” says Blumer.

Thus, if you live in India, California, Chile, Australia or in certain areas of Africa, the atmosphere may be filled with more reflective particles depending on the weather conditions.

“It looks a bit like it does on Mars, when red dust is released into the air, giving the impression that the sky is pink and tends to be red,” adds Plumer.

Even if you live far from the desert (or Mars!), You can still see these magical skies. Desert sands often rise to the upper atmosphere and move towards Europe and perhaps even further into Siberia and even the Americas.

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