Orbital View: Double Rainbow Off the Coast of Baja California, Mexico

USA5_tmo_2012173-615.jpg

Via the crew of NASA's STS-65: They call them "glories" -- optical artifacts that are created when light is scattered backward by airborne water droplets. Although they look like rainbows, they're different in the way they form. Glories rely on a process known as diffraction, while rainbows are produced by refraction and reflection. Above, a glory is just visible against the backdrop of several stratocumulus eddies, or von karman vortices

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Brian Fung is the technology writer at National Journal. He was previously an associate editor at The Atlantic and has written for Foreign Policy and The Washington Post.

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