Why is the Sky Blue?

Raleigh scattering is responsible for the sky's blue hue.

This scattering is the scattering of electromagnetic energy (of which light is a kind) by particles with substantially shorter wavelengths.

The atmosphere scatters the sun's rays, resulting in diffuse sky radiation, which reaches the ground.

Despite the fact that only roughly a third of light is scattered, the smallest wavelengths scatter more easily.

Despite the fact that only roughly a third of light is scattered, the smallest wavelengths scatter more easily.

These shorter wavelengths correspond to blue colours, which is why we see blue in the sky.

The angle at which sunlight enters the atmosphere changes dramatically at sunset and morning.

Because most blue and green (shorter) wavelengths of light scatter even before reaching the lower atmosphere, we see more orange and red in the sky.

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