What caused this rainbow to look like that?
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Old 02-18-2017   #1
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Default What caused this rainbow to look like that?

I took these years ago and just came across them in my files. This was shot from the car along the Hood Canal in Washington state. I have never seen banding like that and was wondering what could have caused it?

Minolta Maxxum 7D
24mm, 1/90sec, f/8, ISO 100

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Old 02-18-2017   #2
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Default Re: What caused this rainbow to look like that?

Doesn't look like an imaging system artifact, but
more likely a natural occurrence. Prolly better to
post it to a science forum, maybe there's even a
meteorological forum.
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Old 02-18-2017   #3
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Default Re: What caused this rainbow to look like that?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Golem View Post
Doesn't look like an imaging system artifact, but
more likely a natural occurrence. Prolly better to
post it to a science forum, maybe there's even a
meteorological forum.
I know we have some members here who are pretty skilled at the effects of light, so I was hoping one of them had an answer before I went further, since I don't belong to any science/meteorological forums.
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Old 02-18-2017   #4
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Default Re: What caused this rainbow to look like that?

The series of partial rainbows inside the primary rainbow and, in this case, outside the secondary rainbow, are called supernumerary rainbows or supernumerary bands. Supernumerary bands are a result of additional diffraction as well as refraction of the different colors of light. Wikipedia is your friend!
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Old 02-18-2017   #5
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Default Re: What caused this rainbow to look like that?

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The series of partial rainbows inside the primary rainbow and, in this case, outside the secondary rainbow, are called supernumerary rainbows or supernumerary bands. Wikipedia is your friend!
Hey, thanks!!! What a great read! I find this kind of thing fascinating and, after reading about the rarity of it on the secondary rainbow, I'm even more jazzed that I caught it with my camera.
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Old 02-18-2017   #6
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Default Re: What caused this rainbow to look like that?

Learn something new nearly every day... and a Minolta Maxxum to boot. Woot.
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Old 03-22-2017   #7
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Default Re: What caused this rainbow to look like that?

You know, I can't comment on the cause. IMO it looks great. We don't see to many rainbows here in southern California. Bummer, would be nice.
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Old 03-31-2017   #8
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Default Re: What caused this rainbow to look like that?

you can create your own rainbow by going outside on a sunny day with a garden hose and a nozzle that can produce a fine mist. Face directly away from the sun so that the shadow of your head falls on the hose's nozzle, point the nozzle away from the sun, and let fly with the mist. You may need to deflect the nozzle a bit one way or the other to see the rainbow; but if the dispersion of the nozzle is wide enough and the sun low enough in the sky, you may get a rainbow that is a complete circle, with the shadow of your head in the center of this circle.

To see a natural rainbow, go outside when the sun is fairly low in the sky while rain is falling in the direction more or less opposite the direction the sunlight is coming from. you might see a rainbow in the direction of the rain.
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Old 04-01-2017   #9
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Default Re: What caused this rainbow to look like that?

Double rainbows are pretty common around here, sometimes even a tripple!
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Old 04-02-2017   #10
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Default Re: What caused this rainbow to look like that?

From the shaded side of an airplane one can sometimes see a rainbow forming a complete circle with the shadow of the plane in the center. If you are on the sunny side of the plane, look for reflections of the sun on water through a polarizer. The view out of the window beats watching television on a long flight.


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