PIA10121: Galapagos Islands Image


Galapagos Islands Image

Caption:

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Galapagos Islands Image

The Mercury-bound MESSENGER spacecraft captured several stunning images of Earth during a gravity assist swingby of its home planet on Aug. 2, 2005. One picture, snapped when MESSENGER was 34,692 miles (55,831 kilometers) above Earth, shows the Galapagos Islands as tiny specks peeking through an opening in clouds of the brightly lit dayside of the planet. The line dividing day and night cuts a swath through South America, with night about to fall on the western half of the continent. The large bright spot to the west of South America is the Sun's light scattering off ocean waves.

Background Info:

These images are from MESSENGER, a NASA Discovery mission to conduct the first orbital study of the innermost planet, Mercury. For information regarding the use of images, see the MESSENGER image use policy .

Cataloging Keywords:

Name Value Additional Values
Target Earth Mercury, Sun
System Earth Mercury
Target Type Earth Planet, Sun
Mission MESSENGER
Instrument Host MESSENGER
Host Type Orbiter
Instrument Mercury Dual Imaging System (MDIS)
Detector
Extra Keywords Color
Acquisition Date
Release Date 2005-08-02
Date in Caption 2005-08-02
Image Credit NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Carnegie Institution of Washington
Source photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA10121
Identifier PIA10121