Ray Optics and Optical Instruments

Some Natural Phenomena due to Sunlight

The  Rainbow:

Rainbow is a beautiful arc of seven colours seen in the sky after rainfall.The   rainbow is an example of the dispersion of sunlight by the water drops in the atmosphere .This is a phenomenon due to combined effect of dispersion, refraction and reflection of sunlight by spherical water droplets of rain. To observe the rainbow, back of observer must be towards the sun.

Scattering of light:  As sunlight travels through the earth’s atmosphere it gets scattered (changes its direction) by the atmospheric particles. Light of shorter wavelengths is scattered much more than light of longer wavelengths. The amount of scattering is inversely proportional to the fourth power of the wavelength .this is known as Rayleigh scattering.

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