Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Tiny little blue dot...

Last week we had another unique chance for a self portrait.  No, not one of those really lame "stand in front of the mirror with an iPhone" photos for a dating site or a Facebook profile, but from much, MUCH farther out that a counter width from your mirror.  
Yes, I'm guilty of the "selfie"
This time the photo was from 4 Billion miles away.  We were all in the photo.  May of us did go outside and wave in the direction of Saturn at the assigned time too!  I looked toward the horizon here and was hoping to take a photo of Saturn while Cassini was taking a photo of us.  I have done daylight planetary photography before, and it IS possible to see planets during daylight with a telescope.  Saturn was just too low at the time for my location. 
 I did get a shot of Venus though!
The photos have been processed and are here.  Eventually, this will be assembled into a large mosaic of the whole planet eclipsing the sun.  But the frame were were waiting for is in. 
The Messenger spacecraft in orbit around Mercury did the same.  It also turned around from it's studies to send a photo home of it's home planet.   Cool!
So when you look at these photos, think about this - everyone that has ever lived, famous, or infamous, all wars, all inventions, all art, dinosaurs, disasters....EVERYTHING that we know or have ever known in the past, and in the future has happened on that tiny blue dot.  If that doesn't make something go *PING!* in your head, I don't know what will. 

Tiny pale blue dot. 

That's us (click to enlarge)
Seen from the other side - Messenger at Mercury

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