Alice shows us where to stand to see a rainbow

For April’s #SciCommChall, Alice (@scied_alice) shows us science in one picture! On her Instagram she writes:

“It‘s time for the April Science Communication Challenge! How do we need to stand to see a rainbow?
First, we need rain. You probably knew about that. Without rain there is no rainbow.

Secondly, we also need some sun. Because a rainbow just appears when the sun rays hit the raindrops and get diffracted. The diffraction depends on the wavelength of the light and since sunlight consists of all colors, it gets split into this beautiful spectrum.

So where do we have to stand to see a rainbow? We have to be right in the middle of sun and rain with the sun at our back. The sunlight travels to the rain (but not right into our eyes), hits the little drops of water and gets diffracted and reflected. The reflected light then hits our eyes and we see the light as a rainbow.

It‘s a beautiful message isn‘t it? Sometimes we have to turn our back to the sun to see the beautiful rainbow. Very poetic.”

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