Sun dog, photographed in Alaska

Sun dog, photographed in Alaska

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Credit: MICHAEL GIANNECHINI/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Sundog in Alaska. A sundog (or parhelion) is an optical effect caused by refraction of sunlight through atmospheric ice crystals. A sundog will be seen to either side of the Sun, and at the same elevation. In this picture, taken in November in Alaska, the Sun is very close to the horizon out of frame to the left. The sundog appears to fall between the forest in the foreground and the mountains in the background. For this reason, the sundog is also known as a 'winter rainbow' in northern parts.

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Keywords: atmospheric effect, climate, effects, meteorology, optical effect, parhelion, sundog, weather, winter rainbow

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