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NASA shares Earth & Moon images captured on Mars
American space agency NASA has released really striking images of what our Earth and its only natural satellite look like from Mars.
The newly-released images were captured using high-powered HiRISE camera, which is operated by the University of Arizona. The agency also revealed that the images were captured a few days before the recently past Thanksgiving.
The images of Earth and Moon, taken nearly 127 million miles away from our planet, were pieced together by scientists to form a composite image so that our only natural satellite would be bright enough to be seen.
Prof. Alfred McEwen, who is leading the HiRISE camera project, explained the image showing that Australia can be seen in the image in the form of a red blob in the middle of Earth, while Antarctica can be seen as a white blob. The other white swirls seen in the image are clouds.
HiRISE (High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment) is the most powerful camera ever sent by humans to another planet. It is a part of NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, which has been orbiting Mars since 2006.
The powerful camera has played a crucial role in recent discoveries. For instance, it allowed scientists to locate safe landing spots for the Phoenix Mars Lander. In 2008, it captured the landing of the Phoenix, providing the first image ever taken of a probe’s descending through the atmosphere of another planet.