Questions tagged [atmospheric-effects]

Questions about the influences of Earth's atmosphere on astronomical observations.

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7
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1answer
160 views

Do radio telescopes see other stars better at night?

As you know, we don’t see stars with the naked eye during the day because of the visible glare of our Sun. As I understand our Sun emits radio frequency waves, too. Is there a radio ‘glare’ from the ...
4
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0answers
64 views

When are wedge prisms used to correct chromatic effects of atmospheric refraction?

Atmospheric refraction (shown below) happens because Earth's atmosphere has an index of refraction that differs from unity. @MikeG's comment mentions that this refraction would have a chromatic ...
2
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1answer
68 views

How do they know the TNT equivalent of the meteor explosion over Vermont?

I've seen several reports of this meteor explosion, below are two. Was there infrasound recordings of the pressure wave, or were weak, local seismic signals recorded, or it this just a ballpark ...
3
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0answers
91 views

Why do some stars twinkle more than others?

This is a child's question I failed to answer. When observing some stars with naked eye, some stars (e.g. Regulus) appeared to blink significantly more than others, but I did not have the patience to ...
8
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1answer
167 views

Oldest Reference to Astronomical Seeing

I'm writing a paper on astronomical seeing. Sir Isaac Newton identified both the phenomenon and origin of astronomical seeing in his Opticks. He writes: If the Theory of making Telescopes could at ...
33
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1answer
2k views

How could a hobbyist astronomer determine apparent magnitude of a star?

Apparent magnitude is a rather complex way to determine the brightness of a star. Quoting the introduction text from the linked to Wikipedia page: The apparent magnitude (m) of a celestial body is ...
5
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2answers
3k views

Does the earth's atmosphere act as a spherical lens and refract light from space?

If so by how much does it "spoil" the view of stars and galaxies etc. Is this error noticable, when compared to pictures taken from outer space.
2
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3answers
899 views

Can we hear something on Venus, Mars and Titan?

Mars, Venus and Titan have an atmosphere and we can theoretically step on them (and die quickly). So, as an example, let's say we can survive on these objects without a space suit. I say: “Hi” on any ...
6
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2answers
244 views

Energetics of Titans Tholin haze

So, I've googled and wiki'd on this, but no clue, so I turn my question to the community: Given Titan's nice orange haze that is supposedly composed of Tholins and strangely coincides with its ...
2
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1answer
1k views

Effect of the absence of atmospheric refraction to sun rise and sunset times

What is the effect of absence of atmospheric refraction on sin rise and sunset time? Is it will be delayed or earlier for sunrise and sunset, and why? Thank you:)
5
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3answers
659 views

How many stars can be seen naked eye from outside the atmosphere? How dense is the “sky” from there?

When I was 20, I went to Naxos (Greece) with friends. I was driving my car during the night on the mount Zeus (1003 meters - 3,291 ft) listening Pink Floyd. Up there we stopped the car to take a walk,...
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1answer
167 views

Around what apparent magnitude can the naked eye observe an object during full moon

For a very rough guideline using healthy/corrected eyes adjusted to the dark, around how bright should an object be to expect it to be visible?
0
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1answer
113 views

How accurate are rederings of something entering Earth's atmosphere?

Supposedly how accurate is it when you see a movies showing something entering Earth's atmosphere traveling 1 mile to 10 miles an hour or barely at all but skinning the atmosphere they show it heating ...
1
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1answer
183 views

Why doesn't the Moonrise appear red when viewed from orbit?

After searching through many videos, I finally found one that shows, from the perspective of low earth orbit, the Moon transiting the horizon. It is actually a Moonset, but it shouldn't make a ...
-2
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2answers
361 views

Why don't these Clouds show no depth perception in correspondence to the Sun [closed]

The pictures show exactly what my naked eye visualized.What is the cause of this?
13
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2answers
3k views

Is Earth unique in its fairly clear atmosphere?

So, we have surface pictures from two alien planets, Venus (captured by the Venera 13), and Mars (captured by the rover). Both of these pictures appear to be very dusty. For Venus we see strong ...
35
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2answers
8k views

Why doesn't the moon twinkle?

Stars twinkle because their light has to squeeze through several different layers of the Earth's atmosphere. So why doesn't the moon twinkle as well?
22
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3answers
7k views

Why can't moon light (reflected sun light) turn the sky blue?

Does turning the colour of the sky blue need more luminous light? Does it depend on luminosity or some other factors are also responsible for this phenomenon? Why can't the moon light turn the sky ...
4
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1answer
2k views

Can you see city lights on the Moon from Earth?

This is the opposite of another question. That question is about whether you could see cities on Earth if you were standing on the Moon. Let's there are cities on the Moon and you're standing on the ...
3
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1answer
101 views

Does the summit of a small mountain offer better seeing?

I have a small amateur telescope, and would like to defeat the atmospheric seeing conditions as much as is possible. Fortuitously, I happen to live fairly close to this lovely patch of bare elevated ...
1
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1answer
29 views

What are reliable resources for weather and all other atmospheric obstructions?

Everyone knows you need clear skies to see what the stars or the Sun is doing. Weather is not too particularly hard to determine. There are many resources out there that will tell us the weather in ...
2
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1answer
292 views

Are the darker blue/black areas in this picture what the atmosphere of Jupiter looks like without clouds?

This is a picture (mosaic?) of Jupiter's south pole taken by Juno (also shown below). It has gotten a lot of press, but I haven't seen anything, even in the scientific paper that accompanied its ...
4
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1answer
289 views

Do the gases in the Earth's atmosphere affect the color of a lunar eclipse?

As the sun's rays pass through the Earth's atmosphere only the red light gets through. Is this the result of specific gases in the Earth's atmosphere filtering the red light? Does all of the nitrogen ...
3
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1answer
155 views

What is tilt anisoplanatism for Laser-guide-star usage in adaptive optic systems?

How does tip-tilt mirrors correct such issue? What is the physical origin of the error?
3
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1answer
115 views

Scattered Intensity of Light vs Angles of Incidence and Emission

So I just derived an expression for the scattered intensity of light from an atmosphere with ideal isotopic scattering: $I/F=\frac{cos(i)}{4(cos(e)+cos(i))}$, where $I$ is intensity, $F$ is flux, $i$ ...
52
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5answers
14k views

Why is moon light not the same color as sunlight?

The light from the moon is light being reflected from the sun. The sun, in space, is white. But on Earth, when the light is filtered through an atmosphere, the light appears yellow. So then, why is ...
-2
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1answer
157 views

Looking at ourselves with a powerful telescope?

Could a small curved mirror and/or lens in Earth's orbit be aimed at a different hemisphere from where you are be be viewed with a powerful telescope to see the ground through the mirror? Would a more ...
6
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1answer
795 views

Is it possible to see Saturn from Titan's surface, day and night?

Titan is the only moon in our solar system with a thick atmosphere, similar to what our Earth's atmosphere was before life "appeared". It also orbits Saturn close enough to actually see it beautifully ...
5
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1answer
176 views

Could spy satellites use laser guide stars (for adaptive optics)?

Are sodium lasers useful for Earth observing space telescopes/spy satellites?
2
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1answer
72 views

Public Data Set on Atmospheric Absorbtion / Extinction

Is there a publicly available data set for mean atmospheric absorption / extinction? I would like to be able to process and plot a graph similar to this image from NASA on wiki commons. The HITRAN ...
17
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1answer
1k views

How much clearer are stars in earths orbit?

As a child I remember my parents taking camping in California, and upon stepping out of the car I was awestruck at how thick the Milky Way galaxy was and at the number of stars everywhere. I've always ...
3
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2answers
385 views

Why is it that night has a almost a bluish tint to it instead of red?

From my understanding/been told, the color red has the ability to travel the farthest in our atmosphere, being the reason why we have red sunsets and such. But with this in mind, why is it that at ...
0
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1answer
112 views

When and where are we exposed to most cosmic radiation?

I understand the mechanical dynamics of being faced away from the Sun at night, having a lower altitude, not being in the weak points at the poles in the atmosphere, being in a valley and others ...
2
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2answers
62 views

What is the horizontal distance needed to observe an object just as badly as if it where in space at the zenith?

When I see an object in space (let's say the ISS) above my head, my line of sight traverses ~$100\; km$ of atmosphere. The vast majority of the extinction, absorption and turbulence happens closer to ...
6
votes
2answers
129 views

Why is blue light extincted more strongly than red?

We know that blue light suffers extinction more strongly than red (examples include ISM, atmosphere etc.), but why? Is it a property of the shorter wavelength itself? Can someone provide a conceptual ...
-1
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1answer
65 views

If the Earth circled a red dwarf/giant or a brown dwarf, would its sky still look blue? [duplicate]

I have the impression that in brown dwarf and weak red dwarf systems, everything looks more reddish on a planet, including its atmosphere regardless of composition. Suppose there's a planet having an ...
2
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3answers
124 views

Source of red in earth's photographs

What is the red in this picture of earth? At first we thought it might be pollution, but Jupiter also has red. Picture source: https://education.seattlepi.com/primary-movements-motions-earth-4701....
3
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2answers
56 views

Understanding energy loss in a telescope aperture due to atmospheric dispersion

I'm trying to understand energy losses due to atmospheric dispersion, given the plot below from the Keck telescope. For a typical seeing I'm told that there's 80% encircled energy in 1". The ...
4
votes
1answer
49 views

Effect of particulates on the visibility of stars?

I am looking for a (mathematical) relationship - either empirical or theoretical - which quantifies how the visibility of celestrial objects decreases with increasing amount of particulates in the air....
1
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0answers
67 views

What can be learned from low frequency radio astronomy available outside of Earth's ionosphere?

As discussions and answers to How large does refraction become in radioastronomy? point out, it is difficult to do radio astronomy much below 30 MHz (or 10 MHz depending on how aggressive you are in ...
7
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2answers
358 views

How will “modern equipment” allow the Royal Observatory to now avoid some of the effects of light pollution at Greenwich?

The article First Light: a new era for the Royal Observatory says (in part): 25 June 2018 The first modern, research-grade telescopes have just been installed at the Royal Observatory Greenwich, ...
1
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0answers
47 views

Why do in general stars twinkle and planets don't? [duplicate]

I got an email update on what can be observed this week. Jupiter looks like a bright yellow-white star, almost as bright as Mars. Saturn is about 10 moon widths to the left and slightly above, and is ...
6
votes
1answer
101 views

Do stars twinkle when seen from Mars' surface?

Mars' average atmospheric pressure is 0.006 atm (0.088 psi). Is that enough to make fixed stars on Mars' night sky twinkle? Do we know an air pressure or density limit for that?
7
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2answers
405 views

How large does refraction become in radioastronomy?

For atmospheric refraction of visible light, Wikipedia gives the order of 1 arc minute at 45° altitude above the horizon, and 5.3 arc minutes at 10°. This is caused by the dielectric polarizability of ...
0
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1answer
151 views

Can an average person see stars from the bottom of a well or through cardboard tubes? Definitive answer required!

A debate about seeing stars or planet during the day below this answer to the Aviation SE question At what altitude might a pilot be able to see at least the brightest stars during the day? seems ...
3
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1answer
79 views

How far can we detect lightning in radioastronomy?

The wikipedia article on whistlers has this information: Voyager 1 and 2 spacecraft detected whistler-like activity in the vicinity of Jupiter known as "Jovian Whistlers", implying the ...
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3answers
569 views

Adiabatic versus convection

I am reading about the interior temperature structure of Jupiter. It says in various texts that there are regions in Jupiter's atmosphere which are well-approximated by a dry adiabatic lapse rate. ...
5
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1answer
279 views

Would a red dwarf star resemble our own Sun at sunset to an observer on a nearby planet?

Suppose you're observing a red dwarf star at Noon from the surface of an Earth-like planet orbiting in the red dwarf's habitable zone, so that the red dwarf's luminosity is equal to our own Sun. Aside ...
0
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0answers
52 views

A question about Sun disk deformation

Suppose the Sun rises and due to refraction the Sun's disc gets deformed. Let the center of the sun be $O$ and $OL$, $OR$, $OT$, $OB$ be the distances from the center of the disc to the edges in the ...
23
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2answers
1k views

Terrestrial Exoplanet Skies – I've Built a Visual Sky Chart. Is it Accurate?

I'm an artist (and science enthusiast) and I've been trying to find a comprehensive resource that would help me clearly identify likely sky colors (as perceived by human vision) for exoplanets that ...