Beautiful and Fascinating Rainbows

Many people love seeing a rainbow when it occurs. Rainbows are not only beautiful and fantastic displays of the master artist’s art work, they are fascinating, too. Many people don’t stop to think about the wonder behind rainbows when they see one, so it can be interesting to look at a few facts about them. * Rainbows are most often seen during or just after a rainfall, when there are a lot of tiny water droplets in the air. However, rainbows can also appear in fog, clouds or when there are crystals of ice in the air. Both water and sunlight are needed to make a rainbow, though, regardless of the state of the water. * In order for a rainbow to be seen, sunlight must be refracted by almost exactly 42 degrees to the eyes of the observer. The water or ice crystals act as billions of tiny prisms to refract the light, but it still needs to be 42 degrees of refraction. If the angle is too great or too small, no rainbow is seen, even if the other conditions are perfect for one. Additionally, to see a rainbow, the sun must be behind you and the water droplets or ice crystals need to be in front of you. * Since the rainbow is made from the refraction of light off of droplets of water or ice at a distance, two different people standing side by side won’t see exactly the same rainbow. They will each have a Continue Reading →


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