Skip to main content

Questions tagged [atmospheric-effects]

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

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
4 votes
3 answers
2k views

What color is the Sky on other Planets?

On Earth, the sky is blue. What color would the sky be on other planets in our solar system? What about outside the solar system? Are there planets with purple skies, or green skies? Or are the all ...
3 votes
2 answers
219 views

Venus Atmosphere Color

I want to ask what color is the Venusian atmosphere without the presence of dense clouds for our human vision? I searched for this question, and did not find a suitable answer. Everywhere they write ...
2 votes
0 answers
136 views

Has "crescent-twinkling" even been demonstrated or at least calculated/predicted? Any "twinkleometer" data for Venus out there?

My new answer to Why does Venus flicker? addresses something that I find particularly interesting; Venus can be an incredibly thin crescent at times, and even a 1 arcminute large thin ring with an ...
1 vote
0 answers
46 views

What would happen to the sky colour if SO2 made up 95% of the atmosphere?

Taking into account the Rayleigh scattering phenomenon, assuming that the atmosphere is 1 bar, how would the light from the G2V-type star interact with this kind of environment? Could the colour of ...
7 votes
1 answer
1k views

Is Earth's Atmospheric Thickness Related to Cosmic Ray Radiation?

Why does cosmic radiation diminish entirely, reaching zero, at sea level? If the atmosphere's thickness were random, it should not happen at sea level, but at a random altitude. Is there a specific ...
2 votes
1 answer
68 views

Which of the blocked radiation windows will (mostly) open if one where to observe from the surface of Mars, instead of the Earth?

Earth’s atmosphere is composed of about 78 percent nitrogen, 21 percent oxygen, 0.9 percent argon, and 0.1 percent other gases. Trace amounts of carbon dioxide, methane, water vapor, and neon are some ...
3 votes
1 answer
196 views

Would an extremely bright star produce same kind of shadow band effect as seen in solar eclipses just before totality?

This answer to What is causing this strange shimmering pattern of light during a total solar eclipse? explains that the shimmering patterns seen on surfaces at the moment before totality of a solar ...
7 votes
0 answers
157 views

Can terrestrial infrared telescopes see through clouds or haze, sometimes at least?

My answer to Could UV-A imaging sensor reasonably see a total eclipse in progress through clouds? suggests that while clouds blocking visible light observation of the (partially) eclipsed solar disk ...
6 votes
3 answers
2k 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,...
7 votes
1 answer
217 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?
6 votes
2 answers
272 views

Impact of Atmospheric Water vapour on Optical Observations

I would like to ask; how does Water Vapour in the atmosphere interfere with astronomical observations? Is it in the same manner as Carbon dioxide? What brought this to mind is the following: A ...
3 votes
0 answers
377 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 ...
6 votes
2 answers
90 views

Meteors arriving to a planet's atmosphere?

Imagine a planet with little or no wind activity or precipitation, but that still has an atmosphere. When a meteoroid reaches the atmosphere and burns, it converts into dust and gas. Does this gas and ...
2 votes
0 answers
34 views

Could rogue planets with cold nucleus have winds or water currents/waves due to the planet's rotation?

Are there any types of wind or waves caused and produced only and exclusively by a planet's rotation? Not influenced by the planet's rotation, but produced solely by it? In the case of waves, are ...
3 votes
0 answers
75 views

To what extent does the increased average airmass the Sun's light passes through contribute to the seasons?

The traditional explanation for the cause of seasons I have heard is that because of the angle of the axis of the Earth with respect to the ecliptic, the angle at which light rays hit the Earth's ...
24 votes
3 answers
8k 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 ...
3 votes
1 answer
265 views

Solar eclipse impact on twilight

Has anyone observed the impact of the solar eclipse on twilight? I mean mostly the extension of the totality path in the atmosphere. I mean the pattern below: I - normal situation with total solar ...
13 votes
4 answers
478 views

How would rainbows appear on other planets?

Are other planets capable of producing rainbows? How would those rainbows appear? Can rain, clouds or ice from elements other than water produce rainbows? Related: https://space.stackexchange.com/...
27 votes
4 answers
3k 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 ...
34 votes
2 answers
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 ...
1 vote
2 answers
395 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?
2 votes
1 answer
294 views

What exactly causes "color twinkling" and why does it seem that any color might be furthest refracted for a moment?

In this answer to Betelgeuse appears in a rainbow of colors through a Newtonian telescope I link to a video of a bright star imaged at perhaps video rate (I think) through a telescope. In addition to ...
3 votes
1 answer
54 views

When measuring the spectrum of an object at the zenith, is it better to orient the spectroscopic slit N-S of E-W?

If you were to measure the spectrum of an object while it's exactly at the zenith, how should you orient the slit of the spectrograph to minimise atmospheric dispersion? Is North-South or East-West ...
3 votes
1 answer
144 views

What conditions are necessary for the sun to look [as described below]

First of all sorry for the weird title. I have no idea how to describe it in a succinct way because I've never heard of something similar happening and I've only witnessed it once. The only way for me ...
5 votes
1 answer
131 views

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

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 ...
1 vote
1 answer
111 views

How would the surface of Mars compare with the Atacama desert for millimeter wave (and shorter) radio astronomy?

In this answer to What kind of experiments would a scientist do on Mars? I suggest that the resemblance of the ALMA array's site in the Atacama Desert to the surface of Mars suggests millimeter ...
4 votes
1 answer
188 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 ...
4 votes
3 answers
111 views

Fixed star-like light appears for a second or two - is there a way to find out what it was?

I saw what I can only describe as a fixed point of light, as bright as a shooting star, near Alpheratz for a second or two before disappearing. I am positive it wasn't a satellite nor a plane. There ...
14 votes
3 answers
3k views

Why are fewer stars seen next to the horizon?

I was in the desert the other day, in an area that was free of light pollution. While it was easy to see the stars above us, I noticed that near the horizon, even when there is no distance light, we ...
3 votes
1 answer
122 views

What are the oxygen or water vapor lines?

I was reading the document Recommendation ITU-R P.676-11 (09/2016); Attenuation by atmospheric gases (P Series, Radiowave propagation) in order to calculate the atmospheric losses, and there were some ...
14 votes
4 answers
5k views

What it the outer part of the sun, that we see with our eyes, called?

When we look at the sun with our eyes it seems much larger than it actually is. When we use a solar filter we are seeing what the sun actually is. So, what is the name of the thing the solar filter is ...
2 votes
1 answer
456 views

How precise are Saemundsson/Bennett refraction formulas?

I was trying to reproduce the predictions of the Bennett formula* by physically-based calculations with a model based on a real-life refractivity profile. My calculations based on Table V from ref. 1 ...
3 votes
1 answer
169 views

Why could I so easily see and photograph such a bright totally eclipsed Moon from a bright city road? (May 26, 2021 total lunar eclipse)

Due to scheduling and geometry I could only snap last night's lunar eclipse with an older model cell phone on a pedestrian overpass of a brightly lit city street, but surprisingly the Moon was quite ...
11 votes
1 answer
396 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 ...
2 votes
1 answer
104 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 ...
8 votes
1 answer
184 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 ...
5 votes
2 answers
4k 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 votes
3 answers
969 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 votes
2 answers
305 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 votes
1 answer
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:)
2 votes
1 answer
136 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 ...
0 votes
1 answer
253 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 votes
2 answers
393 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 votes
2 answers
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 ...
37 votes
2 answers
9k 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?
5 votes
1 answer
4k 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 votes
1 answer
115 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 vote
1 answer
49 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 ...
3 votes
1 answer
1k 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 ...
3 votes
1 answer
697 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 ...