A Tantalizing Hint of the Green Flash

For years I have looked for the "green flash" without success, but a view of one came at an unexpected time and location.

The setting was on a mountain road near Jasper, Georgia in late October, 2001. A clear afternoon brought a beautiful sunset, with a good view of the sun going down behind a wooded mountain. It was inspiring enough to train my video camera on the sun during the last few seconds before it dropped below the mountain.

Watching through the viewfinder of the video camera, I was surprised to see the distinct green flash just before the sun disappeared. On the digital video camera, only two frames showed evidence of the green light, so only 1/15 of a second showed the phenomenon. To be sure, the image above is not very convincing, but if you look closely, you will see a hint of green at the top of the sun image. It was much more dramatic through the viewfinder. I never expected to be able to see it over a wooded mountain - I had heard reports only of sea views and views over bare rock mountains.


Atmospheric optics concepts



Meinel & Meinel


Green Flash

by Andrew Young
HyperPhysics***** Light and Vision R Nave
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