How Rainbows are Formed – HowFlux

How Rainbows are Formed

Rain water Harvesting Methods


You can take rainbows as nature’s most attractive and mesmerizing creation. It is known to almost all of us that rainbows are formed due to the conversion of white light to give seven colors that takes a bow like shape in a semicircular way. Rainbows are a means of attraction for all age groups and people like to search for rainbows after rains but the reason for the formation of these rainbows is known just to a few and thus here in this article we are explaining how rainbows actually get formed.

How Rainbows are Formed

How Rainbows are Formed

What Visible Light Is Composed of?

The light that we see around us is composed of a single color and if I ask you what is that color, you will probably answer me that it is white in color. Let me make you understand this with a simple example, take two glass prisms and pass light through one of them, Now when you will pass white light through one of the ends of the prism, it will form seven colors when it will get out from the other side of it and these colors will be, V:- Violet, I:-Indigo, B:- Blue, G:-Green, Y:-Yellow, O:- Orange, R:-Red. You can learn it simply as VIBGYOR.

These are the same seven colors that you watch in a rainbow, and if you put a prism besides this one again so as to let these seven colors pass through it again, You will watch that those seven colors have again changed into the white light and thus it has been clear to you that white light is actually a combination of seven colors that we see in a rainbow. This proves that visible light is composed of a spectrum of wavelengths.

How Is A Rainbow Formed Within The Rains?

In case of rainbows that get formed in the sky, It is basically the dispersion of light that takes place. The case with water droplets in the rain is same as I told you in the case of prism, Each droplet of water can be supposed as a tiny prism that disperses the light and reflects it back to your eyes making you view seven different colors. As you look up in the sky, the wavelength of light related with each specific color enters your eyes and this way you experience each color from it. These droplets have acted as a reflector of light rays and thus the rainbow gets visible to your eyes.

Why do I see only three or four colors, sometimes in a rainbow?

Different colors have different wavelengths and this becomes the only reason that you are not able to view some of the colors of rainbow sometimes. The color with more wavelength gets visible to your eyes and the color with less wavelength is not visible to you. The wavelength of red color is approximately 630-700 nm and for orange is 590-630 nm and so on, it keeps on decreasing for each further color and this becomes the reason that we are not able to watch the other colors sometimes and mostly the colors with higher wavelengths are visible to us.


About the Author: Editorial Team

Hello from your friendly Editorial Team at We thank you for visiting our website and hope you find our articles both fun and educational. We try to cover a wide range of topics and have over 3,000 articles posted for you to enjoy. Thank you again for being a loyal reader!