Concept

Ultraviolet

Summary
Ultraviolet (UV) is a form of electromagnetic radiation with wavelength shorter than that of visible light, but longer than X-rays. UV radiation is present in sunlight, and constitutes about 10% of the total electromagnetic radiation output from the Sun. It is also produced by electric arcs; Cherenkov radiation; and specialized lights; such as mercury-vapor lamps, tanning lamps, and black lights. Although long-wavelength ultraviolet is not considered an ionizing radiation because its photons lack the energy to ionize atoms, it can cause chemical reactions and causes many substances to glow or fluoresce. Many practical applications, including chemical and biological effects, derive from the way that UV radiation can interact with organic molecules. These interactions can involve absorption or adjusting energy states in molecules, but do not necessarily involve heating. Short-wave ultraviolet light damages DNA and sterilizes surfaces with which it comes into contact. For humans, suntan
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