Why does the Sun look red/orange at Sunrise/Sunset?

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The Sun emits light of all colors that combine to make white light. At mid-day our atmosphere scatters the Sunlight to make the sky appear blue and the Sun a yellowish white. At Sunset, sunlight is scattered even more because it passes through more atmosphere to get to your eyes. More scattering means a redder color. The Sun's apparent color can also be affected by smoke or dust particles in the air which can enhance the scattering effect. Q: Why do the Sun and Moon seem to be the same size in the sky? A: The Sun is actually 400 times wider than the Moon, but it just so happens to be 400 times farther away in space, so it appears to be about the same size as the Moon. Because of this coincidence, the Moon sometimes completely blocks the Sun's light - an event called a total solar eclipse. Q: What is a solar eclipse? A: A solar eclipse occurs when the Sun, Moon, and Earth are lined up just right so that the Moon blocks the Sun's light and casts a shadow onto the Earth. Q: How can I ... more
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