Emerging Sources of Energy

What wavelengths of light from the Sun reach Earth’s surface?

The light from the Sun reaching the Earth’s surface spans a range of wavelengths between roughly 300 to 2,500 nanometers with a few gaps in between where atmospheric water and carbon dioxide absorb radiation. The range of wavelengths spanned by light in the Earth’s upper atmosphere is slightly broader, demonstrating that gases present in the atmosphere absorb a notable amount of light before they reach the Earth’s surface.


This is a web preview of the "The Handy Chemistry Answer Book" app. Many features only work on your mobile device. If you like what you see, we hope you will consider buying. Get the App