One important thing to know about light is that it travels and behaves as waves. Light also has the character of a particle, but we're going to just look at some basic stuff about light as a wave.

All light travels in the form of waves at a speed of about 300,000 (300 thousand) kilometers per second in a vacuum such as space. That's about 186,000 miles every second. That means light can travel almost eight times around the Earth in a second. That's pretty fast! Light has slightly slower speeds when it travels through denser material such as a planet's atmosphere or a piece of glass.

There are many different kinds of light besides the one you can see. What do you think is a good word to describe the light you see? Scientists often describe the light you can see as "visible" light. The entire range of different kinds of light including the ones the human eye cannot see is called the electromagnetic spectrum. Can you think of some other types of light besides visible light? You'll be trying to figure out the different types of light that make up the electromagnetic spectrum as you go through this light tour!

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