Wendelstein Fogbows and Spectre

December 01, 2005

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Provided and copyright by: Carolin Baumann
Summary authors & editors: Carolin Baumann; Jim Foster

The enchanting fogbow above, accented nicely with a Brocken Spectre, was taken from a mountain top near Wendelstein, Bavaria (Germany), on October 3, 2005. Like rainbows, fogbows result from refraction and reflection (see yesterday's Earth Science Picture of the Day). Notice the interference bows on the inside of the brighter fogbow. These are produced by diffraction of light rays, as is the Brocken Spectre (lower center). Often associated with the glory, the Brocken Spectre forms at the antisolar point -- the shadow of the observer is cast onto the myriad small droplets composing the mist.

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