Feeds

NASA probe will ease through Saturn's ring to grab Earth snapshot

See that tiny blue dot? That's our corner of ZZ9 Plural Z Alpha, that is

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

NASA's Cassini spacecraft will take a picture of Earthlings' home planet from the viewpoint of aliens on Saturn next month, snapping the image from hundreds of millions of miles away.

Cassini picture of Earth from Saturn 2006

"While Earth will be only about a pixel in size from Cassini's vantage point 1.44 billion kilometres away, the team is looking forward to giving the world a chance to see what their home looks like from Saturn," said Linda Spilker, Cassini project scientist at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

On 19 July, Earth will seem like a small, pale blue dot between the rings of Saturn in the image, part of a mosaic of the planet's system that Cassini is taking.

Cassini has taken mosaics of the Saturn system twice before: once in 2006 and again in 2012. This, however, will be the first mosaic to capture the images with the Earth in natural colour. It will also be the first to use the craft's highest-resolution camera.

"Ever since we caught sight of the Earth among the rings of Saturn in September 2006 in a mosaic that has become one of Cassini's most beloved images, I have wanted to do it all over again, only better," said Carolyn Porco, Cassini imaging team lead at the Space Science Institute.

To capture the pictures, the imaging team needed to plot Cassini's planned flight path for the rest of its mission and figure out when the Earth wouldn't be hidden by Saturn or its rings. The spacecraft will sit in Saturn's shadow to take the shot, a position that will also provide the probe with the chance to look at the planet's rings. ®

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
Renewable energy 'simply WON'T WORK': Top Google engineers
Windmills, solar, tidal - all a 'false hope', say Stanford PhDs
SEX BEAST SEALS may be egging each other on to ATTACK PENGUINS
Boffin: 'I think the behaviour is increasing in frequency'
Post-pub nosh neckfiller: The MIGHTY Scotch egg
Off to the boozer? This delicacy might help mitigate the effects
I'M SO SORRY, sobs Rosetta Brit boffin in 'sexist' sexy shirt storm
'He is just being himself' says proud mum of larger-than-life physicist
NASA launches new climate model at SC14
75 days of supercomputing later ...
The next big thing in medical science: POO TRANSPLANTS
Your brother's gonna die, kid, unless we can give him your, well ...
Britain's HUMAN DNA-strewing Moon mission rakes in £200k
3 days, and Kickstarter moves lander 37% nearer takeoff
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
10 threats to successful enterprise endpoint backup
10 threats to a successful backup including issues with BYOD, slow backups and ineffective security.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Internet Security Threat Report 2014
An overview and analysis of the year in global threat activity: identify, analyze, and provide commentary on emerging trends in the dynamic threat landscape.