The Earth straddling the limb of the Moon, as seen from above Compton crater. Center of the Earth in this view is 4.04°N, 12.44°W, just off the coast of Liberia. The large tan area in the upper right is the Sahara desert, and just beyond is Saudia Arabia. The Atlantic and Pacific coasts of South America are visible to the left. Credit: NASA/GSFC/Arizona State University

The Earth straddling the limb of the Moon, as seen from above Compton crater. Center of the Earth in this view is 4.04°N, 12.44°W, just off the coast of Liberia. The large tan area in the upper right is the Sahara desert, and just beyond is Saudia Arabia. The Atlantic and Pacific coasts of South America are visible to the left.
Credit: NASA/GSFC/Arizona State University

NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter circling Earth’s Moon has been used to produce a gorgeous image of our home planet.

Using the spacecraft’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera (LROC), imagery provides an interesting perspective of both Earthrises and Earthsets — something someone standing on the Moon wouldn’t be able to.

LROC is operated by Arizona State University (ASU).

No simple selfie

According to an ASU press statement, the images from the Moon of Earth are no simple space selfie.

The maneuver of LRO involved the spacecraft rolling 67 degrees to the side and then slewing with the direction of travel to maximize the width of the horizon — while traveling faster than 3,580 miles per hour.

NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) now circling the Moon. Credit: NASA/GSFC

NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) now circling the Moon.
Credit: NASA/GSFC

 

Hardly static

Mark Robinson, a professor in ASU’s School of Earth and Space Exploration is the principal investigator for the LROC.

The Earth may not move across the lunar sky, Robinson says, but the view is hardly static.

“Future astronauts will see continents rotate in and out of view, and the ever-changing pattern of clouds will always catch one’s eye — at least for those on the lunar side that faces Earth,” Robinson said.

NOTE: Find more images and technical explanations on the LROC website at:

http://lroc.sese.asu.edu/posts/895

Leave a Reply