Happy Earth Day

Earthrise, Apollo VIII, December 22, 1968
Earthrise, Apollo 8

I remember when we first received images of the earth from space. This image, taken by Apollo VIII astronauts returning to Earth after circumnavigating the moon, was not the first. But, showing the green, wet, full-of-life, and finite Earth in stark contrast to the dry, lifeless Moon, it helped energize the environmental movement.
The rising Earth is about five degrees above the lunar horizon in this telephoto view taken from the Apollo 8 spacecraft near 110 degrees east longitude. The horizon, about 570 kilometers (250 statute miles) from the spacecraft, is near the eastern limb of the Moon as viewed from the Earth. On the earth, the sunset terminator crosses Africa. The south pole is in the white area near the left end of the terminator. North and South America are under the clouds. The lunar surface probably has less pronounced color than indicated by this print.
- NASA Earth Observatory

1 comment:

Peregrine said...

An astronaut who was recently at the space station said looking back at earth was of course beautiful but what struck him most profoundly was how thin the atmosphere is.
It makes just a tiny layer over our home that keeps us alive.