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Applied Optics

Applied Optics

APPLICATIONS-CENTERED RESEARCH IN OPTICS

  • Editor: Joseph N. Mait
  • Vol. 50, Iss. 28 — Oct. 1, 2011
  • pp: F134–F141

Photographic evidence for the third-order rainbow

Michael Großmann, Elmar Schmidt, and Alexander Haußmann  »View Author Affiliations


Applied Optics, Vol. 50, Issue 28, pp. F134-F141 (2011)
http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/AO.50.00F134


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Abstract

The first likely photographic observation of the tertiary rainbow caused by sunlight in the open air is reported and analyzed. Whereas primary and secondary rainbows are rather common and easily seen phenomena in atmospheric optics, the tertiary rainbow appears in the sunward side of the sky and is thus largely masked by forward scattered light. Up to now, only a few visual reports and no reliable photographs of the tertiary rainbow are known. Evidence of a third-order rainbow has been obtained by using image processing techniques on a digital photograph that contains no obvious indication of such a rainbow. To rule out any misinterpretation of artifacts, we carefully calibrated the image in order to compare the observed bow’s angular position and dispersion with those predicted by theory.

© 2011 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(010.1290) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Atmospheric optics
(010.1310) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Atmospheric scattering
(010.3920) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Meteorology
(010.7295) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Visibility and imaging

History
Original Manuscript: August 8, 2011
Revised Manuscript: August 28, 2011
Manuscript Accepted: August 29, 2011
Published: September 30, 2011

Virtual Issues
Vol. 6, Iss. 11 Virtual Journal for Biomedical Optics

Citation
Michael Großmann, Elmar Schmidt, and Alexander Haußmann, "Photographic evidence for the third-order rainbow," Appl. Opt. 50, F134-F141 (2011)
http://www.opticsinfobase.org/ao/abstract.cfm?URI=ao-50-28-F134

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