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NASA collage depicts the sun at different wavelengths


While the sun appears to be yellow, it actually emits light in all colours (Courtesy: NASA/SDO/Goddard Space Flight Center)
While the sun appears to be yellow, it actually emits light in all colours (Courtesy: NASA/SDO/Goddard Space Flight Center)

Staff writers

January 23, 2013 — NASA has released a collage demonstrating the sun's wide spectrum.

The sun emits all the colours of the rainbow that, when combined, create what scientists refer to as a "white light."

We see the sun as a giant yellow ball because the Earth's atmosphere scatters light, cancelling out shorter wavelengths like blue and violet. Yellow makes it through because it is the brightest.

To better demonstrate the sun's wide spectrum, NASA has released a collage that depicts it on different wavelengths.

The space agency uses specialized instruments to pick up light waves undetectable by standard cameras.

Each segment of the image represents temperature variations, ranging from a relatively cool 4,500 degrees Kelvin around the chromosphere, to a blistering 10 million degrees Kelvin in flaring regions. 

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