Crepuscular rays: Spectacular sight has simple explanation

Crepuscular rays: Spectacular sight has simple explanation

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Every now and then the clouds and the sun give us more spectacular sunsets than usual.  On Tuesday, July 14 the cumulus cloud field to the west of Tucson allowed us to see what's known as "crepuscular rays."

This phenomenon is actually very simple.  "Crepuscular" derives from the Latin word, "crepusculum," which means "twilight."  Crepuscular rays are the columns of sun rays we see shining through breaks in cumulus clouds.

That's it. No need to dive into a lesson of light refraction and reflection from particles in the Earth's atmosphere. Just enjoy the sight through the clouds.

Copyright 2015 Tucson News Now. All rights reserved.