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Images of Earth Taken by Distant Spacecraft

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#1    Waspie_Dwarf

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Posted 22 July 2013 - 10:24 PM

NASA Releases Images of Earth Taken by Distant Spacecraft


www.nasa.gov said:

PASADENA, Calif. -- Color and black-and-white images of Earth taken by two NASA interplanetary spacecraft on July 19 show our planet and its moon as bright beacons from millions of miles away in space.

NASA's Cassini spacecraft captured the color images of Earth and the moon from its perch in the Saturn system nearly 900 million miles (1.5 billion kilometers) away. MESSENGER, the first probe to orbit Mercury, took a black-and-white image from a distance of 61 million miles (98 million kilometers) as part of a campaign to search for natural satellites of the planet.


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"Space is big. Really big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind-boggingly big it is. I mean, you may think it's a long way down the street to the chemist, but that's just peanuts to space." - The Hitch-Hikers Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams 1952 - 2001

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#2    Saru

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Posted 23 July 2013 - 03:53 PM

Another fantastic view of the "pale blue dot". :)


#3    Waspie_Dwarf

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Posted 23 July 2013 - 04:05 PM

Images like this remind me how small and fragile our planet really is. A tiny oasis of blue in the vast black desert of space.

"Space is big. Really big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind-boggingly big it is. I mean, you may think it's a long way down the street to the chemist, but that's just peanuts to space." - The Hitch-Hikers Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams 1952 - 2001

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#4    Spacenut56

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Posted 24 July 2013 - 08:02 PM

Its just a trippy photo. Even saw it mentioned on my evening local news last night. Our tiny little blue home.


#5    Parsec

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Posted 24 July 2013 - 11:14 PM

Wow, it's really amazing. Are the pictures in true colors?

I didn't think the Moon was so distant from Earth, I'd thought it closer.


#6    Waspie_Dwarf

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Posted 25 July 2013 - 12:13 AM

View PostParsec, on 24 July 2013 - 11:14 PM, said:

I didn't think the Moon was so distant from Earth, I'd thought it closer.
The Earth has a diameter of 12,742 km. The average distance between the Earth and the Moon is 384,400 km so the distance between them is 30 times the Earth's diameter. Of course, depending on the geometry of the Earth, Moon and spacecraft when the image was taken this distance could look smaller than that, but it is still a long way. It represent the furthest distance humans have ever travelled.

However, to put that into perspective, on 27th August 2003 Mars and Earth were the closest they had been for 60,000 years. That distance: 55,758,006 km, that is 145 times further than the Apollo astronauts flew.

"Space is big. Really big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind-boggingly big it is. I mean, you may think it's a long way down the street to the chemist, but that's just peanuts to space." - The Hitch-Hikers Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams 1952 - 2001

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#7    Sundew

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Posted 25 July 2013 - 03:11 AM

I like it when they suggested everyone wave at the camera. Hope they caught my good side and I didn't blink.


#8    Parsec

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Posted 25 July 2013 - 11:17 PM

View PostWaspie_Dwarf, on 25 July 2013 - 12:13 AM, said:

The Earth has a diameter of 12,742 km. The average distance between the Earth and the Moon is 384,400 km so the distance between them is 30 times the Earth's diameter. Of course, depending on the geometry of the Earth, Moon and spacecraft when the image was taken this distance could look smaller than that, but it is still a long way. It represent the furthest distance humans have ever travelled.

However, to put that into perspective, on 27th August 2003 Mars and Earth were the closest they had been for 60,000 years. That distance: 55,758,006 km, that is 145 times further than the Apollo astronauts flew.

Yeah, I know, but still, seeing the Moon in the sky, it looks like so close. That image for me put things in an interesting perspective. Usually in graphic representations (for obvious reasons) Moon isn't portrayed so distant, but you just have to do some math, and it's simple to understand the real proportions.
Still, for me it's an image worth 100 words.






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