June 29th, 2004

scotto monkeypulse

6742 The mysterious green flash - I've seen it.

For more than a century, sky observers have argued about the cause of a brilliant green flash of light that sometimes occurs for a fraction of a second just before the sun rises, or just after it sets. The flash appears only rarely, usually when the atmosphere is very clear, and only when the sun is outlined against a distant horizon, such as a mountain ridge or ocean. Jules Verne described the phenomenon in fiction, mentioning the ancient Scottish legend that attributed supernatural powers to the flash: "At its appearance all deceit and falsehood are done away, and he who has been fortunate enough to behold it is enabled to see closely into his heart and to read the thoughts of others."

The is still some debate over the cause of the green flash, but it is almost certainly a type of refraction phenomenon. In their book, Sunsets, Twilights, and Evening Skies, Aden and Majorie Meinel of the optical Sciences Center of the University of Arizona argue convincingly that atmospheric refraction causes the image of the sun to be separated into a ring of colors, with green located slightly above the predominant red image. For a second or less, when the sun is just below the horizon, a sliver of the green band is refracted above the horizon and becomes the last bit of visible light, erupting in a silent, instantaneous flash of emerald. The flash is just as likely to occur at sunrise as sunset, although it is more difficult then to be watching the precise spot where the sun will appear.

A gallery of green flash examples... This is closest to the one I saw.

From Jules Verne's Le Rayon Vert (The Green Ray) :

"a green which no artist could ever obtain on his palette, a green of which neither the varied tints of vegetation nor the shades of the most limpid sea could ever produce the like! If there is a green in Paradise, it cannot be but of this shade, which most surely is the true green of Hope"
Well, I know my heart, but my mind-reading powers are limited.

Had Fun in CoH with Whims and Sam yesterday... a nice break after a lousy morning at work. They did some phone work and killed the internet connection until about 11am...they finally confessed to it being an offsite problem, after I reset the router and network. Bleah. Also as a result, our line 4 was confused with another office's in Boca... it was the main line for them, so they were none too happy... we just put it on hold after the first 12 calls came in... they got fixed by 1:30dish.

Had a nice lunch of veggie rolls at the local sushi place... VS and I got to vent a little bit over assorted work-politics that're going on. Nothing major, just the usual gripes.

45% of documented serial killers are lefties.

Art-Instruction Books of Andrew Loomis

Your one stop source for human anatomy references for 3D and traditional artists. If you desire to learn human anatomy be sure to check "Drawing Figure for All It's worth" By great anatomy and drawing teacher Andrew Loomis.Site Meter