Topic: sunlight

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Why the Giant Sequoia Needs Fire to Grow

Giant sequoias, the planet's largest trees and among the oldest living things on Earth—many of the largest are over 3,000 years old—depend on fire to help them reproduce. Learn how a destructive force is necessary for...

A winter solstice time lapse in Fairbanks, Alaska

Filmed in time lapse on December 21, 2012 by weather researcher Taro Nakai, enjoy the sun moving low across the sky for the winter solstice in Fairbanks, Alaska, a city that's around 193 kilometers (120 miles) south o...

Can Bird Poop Make Clouds?

How does bird poop potentially help to keep our climate just a wee bit cooler? In this episode of Gross Science, Anna Rothschild helps connect tens of millions of seabirds in the Arctic to 40,000 metric tons of ammoni...

The Snail-Smashing, Fish-Spearing, Eye-Popping Mantis Shrimp

The mantis shrimp is a fascinating creature. One kind impales prey with a spear-like appendage and another smashes prey with a built-in club — the fastest attack in the animal kingdom. "At 30 times faster than the bli...

What Really Causes Sunburns?

Why does your skin turn red and peel when you get a sunburn? In this episode of Gross Science, Anna Rothschild explains what's going on in our skin when it burns from sun exposure.

One Year on Earth – Seen From 1 Million Miles

Every two hours, NASA's Epic camera on NOAA's DSCOVR satellite captures a set of images from its L1 (Lagrange point 1) orbit. The images of Earth's sunlit side are taken in ten different wavelengths. The first color-a...

The Science of Skin Color – TED Ed

When ultraviolet sunlight hits our skin, it affects each of us differently. Depending on skin color, it’ll take only minutes of exposure to turn one person beetroot-pink, while another requires hours to experience the...

Yosemite’s Horsetail ‘firefall’ at sunset

Filmed on February 15th, 2016, a brilliant sunset illuminates the white mist and spray of Yosemite National Park's Horsetail Fall with bright oranges and reds. Called a 'firefall', the name for this optical illusion "...

Shade balls roll into the LA Reservoir to prevent water evaporation

How do you keep your recycled water from evaporating during a state-wide drought? Shade balls. On August 10, 2015, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti joined the LA Department of Water and Power to roll 20,000 black, 4-in...

Sunlight is way older than you think – TED Ed

The random walk problem -- the "mathematical formalization of a path that consists of a succession of random steps" -- can be applied to sunlight... not the sunlight that travels from the sun to Earth, which takes onl...

Gotta Eat! and Classifying Organisms – Crash Course Kids

Why do we eat and how does what we eat help classify what we are? In these first two episodes from Crash Course Kids, Sabrina Cruz explains why all living things eat. Also, try the simple energy source experiment in ...

“Sunflower Cat Window” – Eight cats in a time lapse sunbeam

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, keep a closer eye on your cats because they just may have an agenda that you haven't noticed before. This time lapse video by Mitsuru Yasui is an illuminating mini-epic that revea...

Frozen bubbles: Ice crystals form on bubbles in real time

Watch ice crystals form in real time on these spinning and floating soap bubbles, filmed in -40°C weather in Northern Sweden. The crystalized spikes grow outward quickly as the low sun lights the surfaces of the spher...

Planet Earth in 4K: Time lapse images taken by an orbiting satellite

This video truly illustrates why our Earth is called The Blue Marble. Taken every 30 minutes over Indian ocean from May 15th to May 19th, 2011, these images by the geostationary Elektro-L weather satellite have been c...

Why Is The Sun Yellow and The Sky Blue? – MinutePhysics

Why is the sun yellow and the sky blue? Why can we see the stars at night? Why is space black? And why is the sky more red, orange, and even pink at sunset? In this Minute Physics episode, we leap into "the grand ball...

Why do leaves change color?

The arrival of autumn is a great reason to talk about chemistry: When tree leaves change from green to reds, oranges, yellows, and browns, we're seeing the tree's green chlorophyll fade away, revealing hidden autumnal...

Fourth graders create a solar powered classroom

When Aaron Sebens started talking about renewable energy with his fourth grade class, they kept coming back to their excitement about solar power and making it a more hands-on learning experience. How might they move ...

How the Sun Sees You: Revealing human skin in ultraviolet light

Artist Thomas Leveritt set up a ultraviolet camera and viewing monitor in Brooklyn's Prospect Park to show people what their skin looks like in ultraviolet light. This is "how the sun sees you." The revealed freckles ...

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