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Afterglow - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

12/21/15, 13:13

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

An afterglow is a broad high arch of whitish or rosy light appearing in the sky due to very fine particles of dust
suspended in the high regions of the atmosphere. An afterglow may appear above the highest clouds in the hour
of deepening twilight, or reflected from the high snowfields in mountain regions long after sunset. The particles
produce a scattering effect upon the component parts of white light. The true alpenglow, which occurs long after
sunset or long before sunrise, is caused by the backscattering of red sunlight by aerosols and fine dust particles
low in the atmosphere. It is an afterglow caused by direct illumination of atmospheric particles by sunlight as it
refracts and gets scattered through the earth's atmosphere. The high-energy and high-frequency light is scattered
out the most and the remaining low-energy, low-frequency reaches the observer in the horizon at twilight. The
backscattering of this light further turns it pinkish-red. This period of time is referred to as the blue hour and is
widely treasured by photographers and painters as it offers breathtaking imagery. The afterglow persists till the
earth's shadow (terminator line) takes over the sky of the observer as nightfall and the stars appear, with planet
Venus being the brightest star visible in the night sky just opposite to the Belt of Venus at the anti-solar point.
After the eruption of the volcano Krakatoa in 1883, a remarkable series of red sunsets appeared worldwide.
These were due to an enormous amount of exceedingly fine dust blown to a great height by the volcano's
explosion, and then globally diffused by the high atmospheric currents. Edvard Munch's painting The Scream
possibly depicts an afterglow during this period.

Sunset in Hong Kong

after the 1991 eruption
of Mount Pinatubo

An afterglow in
Dresden, Saxony,

An afterglow in
Slovenian mountains,
near Triglav Lakes

Sunset over the Bates

College track in
Lewiston, Maine.

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Afterglow - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

12/21/15, 13:13

An afterglow at a pier in
An afterglow on
Krakw's housing estate

See also
Belt of Venus
Earth's shadow
Red sky at morning

External links
Retrieved from "
Categories: Atmospheric and ocean optics
Atmospheric optical phenomena Atmospheric science stubs
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