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Sunset over Lake Manasarovar.

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Crepuscular rays; also known as God Rays), in atmospheric optics, are rays of sunlight that appear to radiate from a single point in the sky. These rays, which stream through gaps in clouds (particularly stratocumulus) or between other objects, are columns of sunlit air separated by darker cloud-shadowed regions. The name comes from their frequent occurrences during crepuscular hours (those around dawn and dusk), when the contrasts between light and dark are the most obvious. Crepuscular comes from the Latin word crepusculum meaning twilight.

 

Appearance of Crepuscular rays are near-parallel, but appear to diverge because of linear perspective. They often occur when objects such as mountain peaks or clouds partially shadow the sun's rays like a cloud cover. Various airborne compounds scatter the sunlight and make these rays visible, due to diffraction, reflection, and scattering.

 

Crepuscular rays are usually red or yellow in appearance because the path through the atmosphere at sunrise and sunset pass through up to 40 times as much air as rays from a high midday sun. Particles in the air scatter short wavelength light (blue and green) through Rayleigh scattering much more strongly than longer wavelength yellow and red light.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crepuscular_rays

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Taken on September 13, 2011