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Atmospheric Scattering Problem

  1. Apr 27, 2008 #1

    So I have a scenario where the Earth's atmosphere, instead of scattering blue light from the sun, actually scatters green light based on Rayleigh scattering.

    I know that the sky will therefore appear green, but how will the sun appear?

    I reasoned the sun will be magenta using the normal situation on Earth.

    The sun appears yellow/red (toward sunsets) even though its true color is closer to white because the sun's high frequency light (violet/blue) is scattered in the atmosphere by oxygen and nitrogen molecules. Yellows and reds are low frequency, long wavelength, and are able to penetrate the atmosphere without scattering. During sunsets, the angle of sunlight is very shallow and must go through more atmosphere and undergo more scattering. Much less blue light is transmitted and the low end of the color spectrum is dominant.

    If in a similar situation, green light were to be scattered, then wouldn't green light be much less dominant in the color spectrum? So by removing Green from the additive primary colors, we lose yellow (normal perceived sun color) and cyan as well. The blue and red frequency light will be able to penetrate the atmosphere, mix, and result in magenta with a scattered green sky as the background.

    What do you think? I was toying between a yellow or magenta sun....but i think magenta seems a good option.
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 28, 2008 #2

    Andy Resnick

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