Sunrise Over Germany

December 03, 2002


Provided by: Peter Broich,
Summary authors & editors: Jim Foster, Peter Broich

This gorgeous sunrise was captured at 6:45 a.m. on November 22 near Colonge, Germany. The striking colors result from a partial cloud cover the and scattering of sunlight. When the Sun is low in the sky, the path its rays must take to reach the Earth's surface is somewhat longer than the path-length at mid day, when the Sun is overhead. More numerous aerosols exist in the longer path to scatter the sunlight. Consequently, by the time the rays near the surface, the shorter wavelengths of visible light (the blues and yellows) have been effectively removed. If the cloud deck isn't too thick, sunlight can filter through creating a canvass of crimson, maroon, and apricot. On the photo above, a turbulent atmosphere is evidenced by the wavy coral border just above the horizon, from which crepuscular rays are emanating.

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