Moon Transits The Earth

Ken AshfordScience & TechnologyLeave a Comment

At first blush, this may not seem all that amazing — a short filmed sequence of the Earth… with the moon going in front of it.

After all, we live in a time where such a thing can be generated on even the simplest computer.

But keep in mind, this is REAL, and reflects the first time in history of mankind where such an actual moving image was captured.

Recorded a few months ago, you get to eyewitness space history here, on this blog, right now (unless of course, you’ve already seen it on the news or elsewhere on the web).

It comes from the Deep Impact probe.  The Deep Impact spacecraft was the one that smacked a chunk of copper into a comet so that we could see what materials were below the surface. After the impact, the spacecraft kept going (with the mission renamed EPOXI), and it’s being used to do all sorts of interesting observations.

In late May, 2008, it turned its cameras back to Earth and observed us over the course of a several hours. During this time, from EPOXI’s point of view, the Moon passed directly in front of the Earth! The images were put together into this amazing sequence

This is a view that is literally impossible from the ground. Only a spacefaring race gets the privilege of this view from a height.

Take a look at that, folks. It’s us, seen from 50 million kilometers away