Space & Innovation

How The Moon Creates Rainbows

Everyone loves a good rainbow, but did you know we can see them at night, too? What are moonbows and how do they work?

It might sound like an episode of "My Little Pony" but it's just Mother Nature being lyrical: Under the right conditions, at just the right angle, the moon and the rain can actually combine to produce a lunar rainbow - or moonbow.

While not as spectacular as its big-shot daytime cousin the rainbow, the moonbow works pretty much the same way. Colors are produced as light from the sun refracts through water droplets in the air, although in this case the sunlight is bouncing off the moon first. In today's DNews report, Trace Dominguez gets into the science behind moonbows and even drops some science on the elusive phenomenon of the full-circle rainbow.

Thanks to our sponsor Kay Jewelers for supporting DNews!

Read More:

LiveScience: Rainbows: How They Form & How To See Them

BBC: Iceland: Rare 'moonbow' appears in night sky

Space.com: Moonbows Over Yosemite Waterfalls Offer Dazzling Full Moon Sight