Observing the sun from earth requires special precautions and equipment as direct observation with the naked eye or clear lenses causes eye damage and can result in blindness. An image of the sun can be projected directly onto paper, allowing safe observation, or a viewing tool with an appropriate filter can be used./
The simplest projector uses two sheets of stiff white paper and a pin. Take these materials outside on a sunny day.
Poke a pinhole in the center of one of the pieces of paper. This will focus the sunlight. Take the second piece of paper, and prop it up on a table so it faces the sun. This will provide an observation screen.
Hold the paper with the pinhole up toward the sun, and move it until the sun's rays fall on the observation screen. A bright disk on the paper screen appears once the pinhole aligns with the sunlight.
Find a box that is about 2 feet tall, then cut a small hole in its top. Place the pinhole paper over this hole. At the bottom of the box, cut open one side about halfway up. On the bottom of the box place the white paper screen. Aim this assembly at the sun until the disk appears.
The sun benefits the Earth in several ways, including giving the light animals see with or the energy needed to produce artificial light, the heat that makes life on Earth possible, and energy for plants to make food through photosynthesis of sunlight. Plants are the basis of any food chain.Full Answer >
Without the sun, all life on Earth except for deep sea microbes would die. Earth would cool to minus 100 degrees Fahrenheit within one year, plants would be unable to photosynthesize and gravity would no longer keep the Earth in orbit.Full Answer >
Energy from the sun reaches Earth by way of radiation. Heat can be transferred in three ways: conduction, convection and radiation. Radiation is the only way to transfer heat through empty space.Full Answer >
The sun heats the Earth unevenly, primarily because the Earth is covered by water and land that heat and cool at different rates. Moreover, the equator heats more intensely than the poles. The Earth is also tilted on its axis, creating seasonal differences at specific latitudes.Full Answer >