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If John Tyndall had become a spelunker...


John Tyndall (1820 - 1893) was a British physicist. He was the author of 16 books and 145 articles. Tyndall was a very prominent scientist of the age, and a professor of natural philosophy at the Royal Institution in London (Royal Institute). Why is he important to us? He discovered and explained an everyday phenomenon which at the time was an unknown concept. Fortunately....

If Tyndall had become a spelunker, he never would have discovered or had the Tyndall Effect/Tyndall Scattering named after him.

In a nutshell, the Tyndall Effect is the phenomenon when light glints off particles of dust in the air. Like this:

The Tyndall Effect is exactly what you will NOT see in the Baradla Cave. The cave environment is dust-free, always 10° C, and has a humidity level close to 100%. In fact, it is so humid you can almost bite it. Those who not believe it can give it a try themselves!


Well, OK. Perhaps he still would have discovered it. The video below shows the same effect exhibited by light glistening off water droplets.

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