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Ultraviolet radiation and its properties

Ultraviolet radiation is electromagnetic radiation whose wavelength ranges from the boundary of the violet spectrum to the x-ray boundary . It is worth noting that the first mention of this phenomenon arose in the thirteenth century. It was then that the Indian philosophers described in their writings an atmosphere in which violet rays, invisible to the naked eye, were contained.

At the end of the 17th century, when the infrared spectrum was discovered, scientists around the world began to study the radiation at the opposite end of the light spectrum. This was the first time that ultraviolet radiation was detected and studied. In 1801, IV Ritter discovered that silver oxide darkens faster when exposed to invisible light, referring to the violet part of the spectrum.

Around the same time, scientists came to the conclusion that light consists of three separate parts. This is the so-called visible light (or lighting component), infrared and ultraviolet radiation (it is also a reducing one). In the future, researchers actively investigated the influence of ultraviolet radiation on a living organism, as well as its role in nature.

Ultraviolet radiation: properties and classification

To date, ultraviolet rays are divided into three main types, each of which has its own characteristics:

  • UV-C, which are better known as gamma radiation. It should immediately be noted that they are very dangerous for the health of the human body. Fortunately, such radiation is almost completely absorbed by oxygen, an ozone ball and water vapor while passing through the atmosphere of the planet.
  • UV-B is another type of radiation, which is also almost completely absorbed by the gas envelope of the Earth. Up to the surface reaches no more than ten percent. By the way, it is under the influence of these rays that melanin is produced in human skin.

  • UV-A. This type of rays almost completely reaches the surface of the planet and is practically harmless to living organisms. With prolonged exposure causes accelerated skin aging.

As for the properties, then for the beginning it is worth noting that ultraviolet radiation is invisible to the naked eye. In addition, it has a high chemical activity and is a catalyst for a variety of natural reactions. High concentrations of ultraviolet have antibacterial properties. And, of course, we must not forget that in small doses it positively affects the human body.

Ultraviolet radiation and its effect on the human body

Immediately it is worth noting that it is ultraviolet rays that contribute to the formation of vitamin D in human skin, which in turn ensures normal calcium metabolism in the body and a good state of the bone system. In addition, the rays of this spectrum are responsible for the biological rhythms of the living organism. It is proved that ultraviolet radiation in the blood increases the level of the so-called "vigor hormone", which provides a normal emotional state.

Unfortunately, ultraviolet radiation is useful and necessary only in small doses. Too much impact of these rays causes the opposite effect. For example, with prolonged exposure to the skin, ultraviolet accelerates the aging process, and in some cases causes burns. Sometimes radiation leads to mutations of cells, which can later degenerate into malignant tumors.

Enhanced ultraviolet radiation adversely affects the retina of the eye, causing a burn. Therefore, in the sunny season, you just need to use special protective goggles.

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