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Why arent there rainbows in the sky?
Old 09-03-2014, 02:23 PM   #1
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Why arent there rainbows in the sky?

No really, im on a plane often, i look out the window and see all types of clouds, made of water droplets, bathed in sunlight. This is suppose to make rainbows.

What is the government hiding?


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Old 09-03-2014, 02:26 PM   #2
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The sun has to be behind you in order to see a rainbow.
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Old 09-03-2014, 02:27 PM   #3
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Old 09-03-2014, 02:29 PM   #4
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The sun has to be behind you in order to see a rainbow.
I've not seen it myself but I understand from others that from an airplane the rainbow is a circle.

Just thought of something - if its in a circle, where's the pot of gold?
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Old 09-03-2014, 02:30 PM   #5
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I've not seen it myself but I understand from others that from an airplane the rainbow is a circle.

Just thought of something - if its in a circle, where's the pot of gold?
The government confiscated it.
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Old 09-03-2014, 02:33 PM   #6
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I see y'all are as perplexed as I.


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Old 09-03-2014, 03:46 PM   #7
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For a reflective rainbow, you need rain... large droplets. The droplets that make up clouds are tiny! Plus, the light transmission loss through clouds prevents a cumulative effect.

A refractive rainbow (looking towards the sun), often seen via the ice crystals in cirrus clouds, is an actual cloud-rainbow. I have only seen short fat segment rainbows this way.

Another answer is the pot of gold is kept hidden right next to the 200 MPG carburetor that the oil companies didn't want us to know about in the 1970s
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Old 09-03-2014, 04:14 PM   #8
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Often I find when flying at altitude above the clouds that if you can look down with the sun directly behind you to where the plane's shadow is on the cloud tops, you will see a rainbow effect. As mentioned, circular.
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Old 09-04-2014, 04:22 PM   #9
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Last week we were in the High Sierras taking a hike at about 10,000 feet. It was a partially cloudy sky. The sun was overhead, no rain, and there was a long thin cloud to the Southwest.

As we looked up it was showing off a light show of reds in one segment, greens below, further to the left were lavendar and blue. The colors changed somewhat as the minutes went by.

I guess this was a partial rainbow affect but we'd not seen anything like it before. With polarizing sunglasses the colors were more intense.

This reminded me of an illustration in my old physics book decades ago. Here are some images of the refraction concept:
https://www.google.com/search?q=refr...h=979&dpr=0.87

Also from Wikipedia:
Quote:
If parts of clouds have small droplets or crystals of similar size, their cumulative effect is seen as colors. The cloud must be optically thin, so that most rays encounter only a single droplet. Iridescence is therefore mostly seen at cloud edges or in semi-transparent clouds ...
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Old 09-04-2014, 09:02 PM   #10
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Often I find when flying at altitude above the clouds that if you can look down with the sun directly behind you to where the plane's shadow is on the cloud tops, you will see a rainbow effect. As mentioned, circular.
This is called the glory.
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Old 09-05-2014, 06:04 AM   #11
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Seen raibow circles several time riding in airplanes.

Once just happened to be traveling with a physicst. Astronomy type, who switched to seismology. He explained that riding in a plane it will most likely appear as a circle, sun must be behind viever, and how the moisture droplet bend the light beams and the resulting spectrum spread. Also about where the red will always be. Made perfect sense then, no way for me to actually re- explain. Elementary optics to him.
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Old 09-05-2014, 10:34 AM   #12
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So from above a rainbow is a circle. I'll have to look down more from the planes I guess, I have never seen them.

hmm, so rainbows from above look like concentric circled "targets". That's a bit ominous.
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Old 09-05-2014, 11:38 AM   #13
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I saw the circle rainbow for the first time ever on a helicopter ride a couple of weeks ago in Kauai...I never knew that something like that existed. Made my first ever helicopter ride even more memorable
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Old 09-05-2014, 01:10 PM   #14
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Rainbows are being threatened by climate change, they'll be completely eliminated within 10-15 years if we don't act. One of the many rarely publicized outcomes associated with climate change...or I just made that up.
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Old 09-05-2014, 01:15 PM   #15
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