Not a traditional rainbow!

Traditional rainbow...NOT!

About a half an hour ago...over the Heritage Station Musuem in Pendleton, OR. This isn't a rainbow in the traditional sense--it is caused by light passing through wispy, high-altitude cirrus clouds. The sight occurs only when the sun is very high in the sky (more than 58 degrees above the horizon.) What's more, the hexagonal ice crystals that make up cirrus clouds must be shaped like thick plates with their faces parallel to the ground. When light enters through a vertical side face of such an ice crystal and leaves from the bottom face, it refracts, or bends, in the same way the light passes through a prism. If a cirrus' crystals are aligned just right, the whole cloud lights up in a spectrum of colors.

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me says ... on Friday, Jul 2 at 1:29 PM

yea, when you se that take it as a sign that the next day probly wont be very nice out side.

themom51 says ... on Thursday, Jul 1 at 7:58 PM

Good catch on that and thanks for the meteorology lesson, too!

Anonymous says ... on Thursday, Jul 1 at 7:39 PM

Just like a rainbow in the dark...

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