MadSci Network: Earth Sciences

Re: Coulor of the Sun

Date: Sun Apr 8 17:11:03 2001
Posted By: Angelle Tanner, Grad student, Astronomy, UCLA
Area of science: Earth Sciences
ID: 985226967.Es

Given that we are discovering lots of planets orbiting around 
all different kinds of stars, your question is a timely one. 
I think that the way we and the other life forms look on Earth is very
on the type of Sun we have. One important trait is the fact that our eyes
are the most sensitive to the same wavelengths of light as that which the
radiates the most. Otherwise, we would be stumbling around a lot
and would probably get eaten. Indeed, the plants are green because
the chlorophyll which converts the sunlight to energy wants to 
absorb as much sunlight as possible. If we were orbiting a blue
star, for instance, our plants would most likely be much bluer and
might be a little tougher to account for the increase in ultraviolet 
radiation emitted by a blue star. 

There are some signs that our skin color is related to the type of 
environment we descended from but its tricky to say since groups
of people have migrated across the globe over the years.  

So, yes. I thin that we and the life around us would look a little
if the Sun were blue or redder. 

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