Sunday, October 24, 2010
According to the National Center for Atmospheric Research, the spectacular light show that is called a rainbow is really sunlight spread out into its full spectrum of colors, diverted to the eye by water droplets.
Although Sir Isaac Newton is said to have discovered seven distinctive colors found in a rainbow, there are an infinite number of colors in the full spectrum. Most of the colors are not visible to the human eye.
Since you must have both rain and sunlight in order to see a rainbow, and the sun must always be behind you when you witness one, it's not likely you'll ever see a rainbow at noon.
If it weren't for the earth getting in the way, you'd see the full circle of a rainbow.
No two people standing next to each other will see the exact same rainbow. For one thing, the person standing next to you, for example, will see light refracted off of different raindrops at a different angle. And second, different people simply see color differently.