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B Dilation by atmosphere?

  1. Aug 10, 2016 #1
    Light from the sun takes about 8 mins to reach the earth. But does the time get delayed appreciably due to earth's atmosphere??
    Thanks in advance !
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 10, 2016 #2


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  4. Aug 10, 2016 #3
    Can you please elaborate it ?? Thanks btw! :smile:
  5. Aug 11, 2016 #4


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    The densest portion of the atmosphere, the troposphere, is roughly 7 miles thick and contains 80% of its mass. Seven miles is an utterly tiny distance compared to the 90 million miles light has to travel to get from the Sun to the Earth, so any slowing effect would have to be extreme in order to have an appreciable effect. However, the refractive index of air is very close to 1, so light's speed through air is still more than 99% of its speed through the vacuum of space. Long story short, there's no significant delay caused by the atmosphere.
  6. Aug 11, 2016 #5
    :smile:Thanks perfectly clear to me now !!
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