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Why do I sometimes see two rainbows on top of each other?
Answered by Discovery Channel
  • Discovery Channel

    Discovery Channel

  1. There's something exciting about seeing a rainbow. And when you actually see two at once -- one on top the other -- it's even more thrilling. When light passes through raindrops trapped in the air, it is reflected and refracted out in different directions, the different colors of light exit the drop at different angles. If enough drops reflect enough light at once, a rainbow is formed. Sometimes, though, the process that causes a rainbow will reflect twice instead of once; in this case, the rainbow forms a mirror image of itself that, while still visible, is higher up and thus much fainter to the human eye. Double rainbows are actually just mirror images of the same rainbow!

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