Eli5: why does the sun appear a bit flattened while the sunset is happening ?

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Eli5: why does the sun appear a bit flattened while the sunset is happening ?

In: Physics

2 Answers

Anonymous 0 Comments

The light of the sun is passing through the air at an oblique angle, which causes the light to become distorted similar to heat haze you see rising from a road on a hot day.

Anonymous 0 Comments

Light refraction. The sun’s light “bends” as it passes through the atmosphere at an angle. Near sunrise and sunset, this makes the sun appear a bit higher above the horizon than it actually is. Because light from the “bottom” of the sun is hitting the atmosphere at a shallower angle than light from the “top” that part of the sun appears a bit more elevated, giving the sun a slightly flattened appearance.