Natural Light

Planetary illumination -- from sun, moon, stars -- be it indoors or out. Has higher color temperature than artificial light, and thus more bluish qualities.
1620px Ніжний ранковий світло

Planetary illumination -- from sun, moon, stars -- be it indoors or out. Has higher color temperature than artificial light, and thus more bluish qualities.

Daylight is the combination of all direct and indirect sunlight during the daytime. This includes direct sunlight, diffuse sky radiation, and (often) both of these reflected by the Earth and terrestrial objects, like landforms and buildings. Sunlight scattered or reflected by objects in outer space (that is, beyond the Earth's atmosphere) is generally not considered daylight. Thus, daylight excludes moonlight, despite it being in direct sunlight. Daytime is the period of time each day when daylight occurs. Daylight happens as Earth rotates, and either side on which the Sun shines is considered daylight.

Sunlight is a portion of the electromagnetic radiation given off by the Sun, in particular infrared, visible, and ultraviolet light. On Earth, sunlight is filtered through the Earth's atmosphere and is obvious as daylight when the Sun is above the horizon. When the direct solar radiation is not blocked by clouds, it is experienced as sunshine, a combination of bright light and radiant heat. When it is blocked by clouds or reflects off other objects, it is experienced as diffused light. The World Meteorological Organization uses the term "sunshine duration" to mean the cumulative time during which an area receives direct irradiance from the Sun of at least 120 watts per square meter. Other sources indicate an "Average over the entire earth" of "164 Watts per square meter over a 24 hour day".

The ultraviolet radiation in sunlight has both positive and negative health effects, as it is both a requisite for vitamin D3 synthesis and a mutagen.

Sunlight takes about 8.3 minutes to reach Earth from the surface of the Sun. A photon starting at the center of the Sun and changing direction every time it encounters a charged particle would take between 10,000 and 170,000 years to get to the surface.

Sunlight is a key factor in photosynthesis, the process used by plants and other autotrophic organisms to convert light energy, normally from the Sun, into chemical energy that can be used to synthesize carbohydrates and to fuel the organisms' activities.

Moonlight consists of mostly sunlight (with little earthlight) reflected from the parts of the Moon's surface where the Sun's light strikes.

Key Terms

direct sunlight

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Natural Light
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Sources & Credits

Last modified on September 19 2019
Content adapted from Wikipedia
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