Why do stars twinkle?

Stars Read more from
Chapter Astronomy and Space

Stars actually shine with a more or less constant light. They appear to twinkle to those of us observing them from Earth due mostly to atmospheric interference. Molecules and dust particles float at random in Earth’s covering of gases. When such floating particles pass between a star and a person observing it, there is a brief interruption in the stream of light. Added together, these brief interruptions give rise to twinkling stars.


This is a web preview of the "The Handy Science 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