Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Light Pollution

Light Pollution annoys many would be star-gazers by effectively cutting them off from the rest of the universe. Why should anybody be limited from catching a glimpse of what the universe looks like beyond our tiny planet's atmosphere? The simple answer is that public lighting benefits the general population much more than star-gazing does.

Nevertheless, I've speculated on a relatively easy way to see through light pollution. Much of the light pollution in the modern age is generated from sodium vapor lamps, or other types of fluorescent lamps. Because of the way fluorescent lamps work, many times their light is monochromatic or limited to a few frequencies and wavelengths. However, starlight isn't as limited. Hence, you could make a filter that would generate the highest ratio between starlight / light pollution by filtering out frequencies commonly used by fluorescent lamps, and letting in frequencies commonly emitted by the stars. This sort of filter is referenced in this article.

You could make goggles with filters, with with blinds that would block light from the side.

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