Spectral Analysis Hat and Cowl Knitting Pattern Set
Did You Know?
Have you ever wondered how scientists know what chemical elements a star, supernova or a whole galaxy is made of? As you can imagine, it is terribly complicated. But the very basics for it is a super simple experiment that students learn about in their 3rd semester called spectral analysis.
How Does it Work?
Elements can be identified by the color they give to a flame. The wavelength of the color identifies the element, and the intensity gives away the amount. Sodium, for example, shows two very distinct yellow lines.
Even the names of some elements refer to spectral analysis. Rubidium shows a dark red line and its name comes from Latin rubidusmeaning dark red. Cesium comes from the Latin word for sky blue, again after the color of its spectral line.
Spectral analysis is an experiment that I remember fondly to this day. It was easy, fun and—most of all—it worked! It inspired the beautiful candle flame pattern.