What is UV light?


Ul­tra­vi­o­let light is a form of elec­tro­mag­netic ra­di­a­tion. It makes up the 10 per cent of sun­light that’s re­spon­si­ble for tans (and sun­burn). It’s also used in chem­i­cal pro­cess­ing, skin cancer treat­ment and dis­in­fect­ing sur­faces. It’s even been sug­gested that UV light played a key role in the ori­gin of life on Earth. Cer­tain flu­o­res­cent sub­stances, like min­er­als, plants and paint pig­ments, ab­sorb UV ra­di­a­tion, which they then emit as vis­i­ble light. As well as mak­ing our paints glow, they’re are used to im­prove vis­i­bil­ity in things like road signs and safety vests.

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