Record-breaking nine hour rainbow spotted in Taiwan

Taiwan rainbow 'lasts record-breaking nine hours'

The rainbow, which curved over Taipei last Thursday, lasted from 6.57 3.55 p.m., professors at the nearby Chinese Culture University said.

Most rainbows last for less than an hour, and the existing Guinness record for the longest-lasting rainbow of 6 hours was set in 1994 in Wetherby, Yorkshire in the United Kingdom.

There's little documentation out there, but the rainbow was apparently observed from the University of Sheffield for most of the day.

But last week, professors and students of the Chinese Culture University in Taipei's mountains were treated to one that lasted for nine hours.

The Department of Atmospheric Sciences at the university alone took more than 10,000 photos of the rainbow to prove that it lasted nearly nine hours.

"Why wouldn't we want to make Taiwan a destination of colors?" he said.

But the interesting thing is that this is a natural phenomenon lasted for nine hours.

Chou said after witnessing the rainbow for six hours, he was prepared for the next one.

"It was awesome... it felt like a gift from the sky... it's so rare!" The department captured 10,000 photos, in addition to thousands more collected by volunteers, which let them build a second-by-second record to show the rainbow's duration.

But a seasonal northeast monsoon in the area trapped moisture in the air, forming clouds, sunlight and a relatively slow and steady wind speed of 5.5 to 11 miles per hour, to create the ideal atmospheric conditions to extend the the length and appearance of this particular rainbow, BBC News reports.

Chou said such atmospheric condition are quite normal in winter in Taipei's Yangmingshan mountain range, where the campus is located.

"Besides the two main rainbows that are easily observed, the other two are known as supernumerary rainbows, which are less obvious to see due to the difference in the size of rain drops", Kun-hsuan said, according to The Daily Mail.

"I plan to contact the Taipei City tourism department to promote this, 'You can see a nine-hour rainbow in Taipei in the winter, it's incredible!"

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