Color of Liquid Oxygen

Date: Mon Jun 08 1998 - 10:24:20 PDT

Dear Mark --
        My understanding is that the blue color of the sky is definitely related to
the blue color of liquid oxygen. For liquid oxygen, all the blue color is due
to the oxygen alone, since it's the only substance present. For the blue sky,
oxygen molecules are an important contributor to the blue color, but so are
other gases, particulate matter, etc. Without the oxygen in the atmosphere,
the sky would be less blue.
        At another level, it is my understanding that a form of scattering called Mie
scattering, which deals with scattering by very small particles and is less
efficient than Rayleigh scattering, may assume more significance for the blue
color of liquid oxygen than it does for the blue sky. Oxygen has been shown
to perform some Mie scattering, and when you condense the oxygen to a liquid,
or further to a solid, the blue color associated with the Mie scattering
should be enhanced.
        I hope this helps. -- Don Rathjen

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