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Earth photographed from 62 million km away


Posted on Thursday, 15 February, 2018 | Comment icon 5 comments

Our home as seen from far, far away. Image Credit: NASA
NASA's OSIRIS-REx probe has captured a stunning new image of the Earth against the blackness of space.
Launched atop a 19-story Atlas V rocket back in 2016, the spacecraft, which was developed by Lockheed Martin, is part of NASA's ongoing New Frontiers Program which also includes New Horizons, which visited Pluto, and the Juno probe, which is currently in orbit around Jupiter.

It will take until August 2018 for OSIRIS-REx to reach its destination - the asteroid Bennu - after which it will spend the next 505 days mapping the space rock in unprecedented detail.

Once a suitable site has been picked, the probe will use a robotic arm to collect samples from the asteroid's surface before sending them back to the Earth inside a small capsule.

Currently still a long way from its target, the spacecraft made headlines this week by capturing its own version of the famous 'Pale Blue Dot' photograph from a distance of 63.6 million kilometers.

The image makes for a humbling view of our planet and its place in the vastness of the cosmos.



Source: Deccan Chronicle | Comments (5)

Tags: Earth, Osiris

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by White Unicorn on 15 February, 2018, 13:47
I would like to see more photos of earth like this, but closer. Close enough to see the space station, satellites, and orbiting space junk. This shot reminds me of the Dr Suisse TV program of the world on a piece of dust. LOL
Comment icon #2 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 15 February, 2018, 15:49
That's simply not possible. The Earth is over 12,000 km in diameter. The largest artificial object in orbit is the ISS, and it's only the size of a football field. Any image that shows the whole Earth, from whatever distance it is taken, would simply not have the resolution, and would be too small, to show satellies and space junk.
Comment icon #3 Posted by White Unicorn on 16 February, 2018, 17:36
I'd be happy just to see an image of our satellites and space junk, not necessarily a view showing the whole image of the earth with it.
Comment icon #4 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 16 February, 2018, 17:59
The most obvious question is why? There are plenty around of photographs of satellites around. There are images of the ISS taken by amateur astronomers detailed enough to show spacewalking astronauts. However most space junk is small, taking detailed images of objects only a few feet across from several hundred miles away is not an easy task. Most photographs of satellites show nothing more than a streak of light as the satellite moves across the sky or a point source of light.
Comment icon #5 Posted by White Unicorn on 16 February, 2018, 18:14
I wondered how much bigger junk is still up there in orbit? It would be interesting to view some satellites in orbit from space together not just a close up of one at a time. Has that been done Waspie?


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