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Departing Earth, a view from Messenger Spacecraft (2005)

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On its way to Mercury in August, 2005, eight years ago, Messenger Spacecraft took 358 images with its wide-angle camera over 24 hours, one Earth rotation. The images were brought together in this 13 second time lapse video. From APODVideos:

The spacecraft was 40,761 miles (65,598 kilometers) above South America when the camera started rolling on Aug. 2. It was 270,847 miles (435,885 kilometers) away from Earth – farther than the Moon’s orbit – when it snapped the last image on Aug. 3.

Farther than the Moon’s orbit. Lit beautifully in the darkness of space, this is what Earth looks like as you leave it.

You can also see Mercury spinThe smallest of our eight planets and the one closest to the Sun, Mercury is being well-documented by Messenger. After two years in orbit, it finished imaging 100% of the planet in early 2013.

Related watching: Mars spinning, and more planets.

via NPR

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