Spectral Analysis Hat by Tanja Luescher

Spectral Analysis Hat

February 2020
Light Fingering ?
30 stitches and 38 rows = 4 inches
in stockinette stitch
US 1½ - 2.5 mm
US 00 - 1.75 mm
400 yards (366 m)
Brim circumference: 15.25 (16.75, 18.5) (20.25, 23.5)” [39 (43, 47) (51, 60) cm]
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Did You Know?

Have you ever wondered how scientists know what chemical elements a star, supernova or a whole galaxy is made of? As you can imagine, it is terribly complicated. But the very basics for it is a super simple experiment that students learn about in their 3rd semester called spectral analysis.
How Does it Work?

Elements can be identified by the color they give to a flame. The wavelength of the color identifies the element, and the intensity gives away the amount. Sodium, for example, shows two very distinct yellow lines.

Even the names of some elements refer to spectral analysis. Rubidium shows a dark red line and its name comes from Latin rubidusmeaning dark red. Cesium comes from the Latin word for sky blue, again after the color of its spectral line.

Spectral analysis is an experiment that I remember fondly to this day. It was easy, fun and—most of all—it worked! It inspired the beautiful candle flame pattern on this hat.

Unique Sheep Verve (100% superwash merino wool; 400 yds 366 m/100g): Erin’s Dream, 1 skein.

Thanks to the Unique Sheep for the yarn and to Carol for knitting the sample!

Size US1.5 (2.5mm) needles 24″ (60cm) circulars

Or size needed to obtain gauge

Size US000 (1.75mm) needles 24″ (60cm) circulars

Or several sizes smaller than needed to obtain gauge

30 sts and 38 rows = 4″ 10cm in St st

28 sts and 40 rows = 4″ 10cm in patt after blocking

Size: XS (S, M) (L, XL)

Brim circumference: 15.25 (16.75, 18.5) (20.25, 23.5)” 39 (43, 47) (51, 60) cm


Tapestry needle, 1 stitch marker (for BOR)