NASA’s Mars Probe Snaps Astonishing Image of Earth and Moon
If you even wondered what it would be like to look up at the sky and see the pale blue dot from the surface of the red planet, then look at the image above. The image was taken by a NASA Mars probe that gave a Mar-eye vision of the earth and the moon. Obviously, the image above has been enlarged a lot, you can see the pixilation. The image brightness was also adjusted, since the image was taken from 127 million miles or 205 million kilometers away.
The Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter or the MRO used it’s High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment or HiRISE camera to capture the picture of out planet and its moon. The time on Earth was 20th November, 2016. The amazing photograph is actually a composite photograph. The camera itself has a pretty impressive optics, enough to resolve features as small as 3.3 feet or 1 meter across on the Martian surface.
“The combined view retains the correct positions and sizes of the two bodies relative to each other,” NASA officials wrote in a description of the image, which was released on 6th January.
Australia, Asia, Pacific Ocean Visible
“The distance between Earth and the moon is about 30 times the diameter of Earth,” they added. “Earth and the moon appear closer than they actually are in this image because the observation was planned for a time at which the moon was almost directly behind Earth, from Mars’ point of view, to see the Earth-facing side of the moon.”
The newly released image is sharp enough to reveal continent-size details on Earth; indeed, the reddish-brown feature in the middle of the planet is Australia, NASA officials said.
If you look closely, you can also see eastern parts of Asia as brown patches on the top left of Australia in the image. You can also make out the oceans in the image. The image itself is impressive enough as it could distinguish continents from so far away.
The MRO is a 720 million USD mission, the probe occupies a circular orbit that varies from 155 to 196 miles or 250 to 316 kilometers from the Martian surface.
Image Source: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Univ. of Arizona