Dictionary > Ultraviolet radiation

Ultraviolet radiation

Definition
noun
A form of electromagnetic radiation emitting ultraviolet rays
Supplement
The electromagnetic radiation is the radiation released in the form of electromagnetic waves. The distance between successive crests is called the wavelength. The shorter the wavelength, the greater is the amount of energy. There are many forms of electromagnetic radiation. One of them is ultraviolet radiation emitting invisible light, particularly ultraviolet (UV) rays. UV rays have higher wavelength to that of visible light. In the electromagnetic spectrum, the UV rays are those that are beyond the violet end of the visible spectrum (wavelength less than 400nm) and above the x-ray wavelengths (greater than 5 nm). Thus, the wavelengths of UV range to about 10 nm to about 400 nm.
The main source of UV radiation is solar radiation. A fraction of UV radiation can reach the surface of the earth. Unlike visible light, UV is not visible to human eye. Some animals though such as certain small birds have a color receptor for UV rays and therefore can see UV rays. Prolonged exposure to UV can damage living tissues. It is the uv component of sunlight that causes actinic keratoses to form in skin, but that is also required for vitamin D synthesis. Nucleic acids absorb UV most strongly at around 260 nm and this is the wavelength most likely to cause mutational damage (by the formation of thymine dimers).
Abbreviation / Acronym:

  • UV radiation

See also:

  • radiation
  • electromagnetic energy
  • electromagnetic spectrum
  • ultraviolet ray


    You will also like...

    Schematic diagram of DNA replication
    DNA Structure & DNA Replication

    DNA is a double helix structure comprised of nucleotides. A nucleotide, in turn, is made up of phosphate molecule, deoxy..

    Still freshwater and plants
    Still Freshwater & Plants

    Plants in lentic habitats have features not found in terrestrial plants. They acquired these features as they adapt to t..

    Homeostatic Mechanisms and Cellular Communication
    Homeostatic Mechanisms and Cellular Communication

    Homeostasis is the relatively stable conditions of the internal environment that result from compensatory regulatory res..

    Homo Species
    The Homo Species

    The evolution of the species of the genus "Homo" led to the emergence of modern humans. Find out more about human evolut..

    3D rendering of an antibody
    Passive and Active Types of Immunity

    Lymphocytes are a type of white blood cell capable of producing a specific immune response to unique antigens. In thi..

    New Zealand Flora & Fauna
    Ecology & Biodiversity: New Zealand Flora & Fauna

    New Zealand is known for its unique biodiversity, caused by its remarkable geography and geologic history. Breaking away..