What Makes the Colors in a Sunset?

Photo by Dennis Groom on Unsplash

on November 13, 2023

Hi! Welcome back to the Kids Answers magazine blog, where we answer your big questions about God’s Word and God’s world.

Each night (when it’s not too overcast), God paints the sky with beautiful colors. But have you ever wondered what makes the colors of a sunset?

In an earlier blog post, we talked about why the sky is blue. We mentioned that the color of the sky is caused when multicolored rays from the sun are scattered by dust and other particles in the atmosphere (pronounced AT-muh-sfeer).

At sunrise and sunset, the light from the sun has to travel much farther through the atmosphere to reach us here on earth. The shorter light waves (blue and violet) are scattered by particles in the atmosphere, which is why those colors don’t appear in the sunset very often. But because red and orange light waves are longer, they make it on the long trip through the atmosphere without being scattered too much. This is why those colors appear in the sky at night or early in the morning.

From the sea to the sky, God’s creativity is on display. Next time a beautiful sunset takes your breath away, remember to thank God for putting it there for you to enjoy!

Do you have a question about God’s Word or his world that you want us to answer? Is there a topic you want to learn more about? Ask your parents to help you submit your question today. We’d love to hear from you!