Nasa spacecraft captures stunning image of the Earth and the moon from three million miles away
The OSIRIS-REx is travelling towards asteroid Bennu.
A Nasa spacecraft on its way to a rendezvous with an asteroid managed to capture a breathtaking image of the Earth and the moon from three million miles away.
The OSIRIS-REx spacecraft caught a unique view of our planet as it travelled towards asteroid Bennu, a huge carbon-rich rock that the US space agency believes might contain “organic materials or molecular precursors to life”.
The spacecraft is on “a mission to figure out where we came from, as asteroids are remnants from the formation of our solar system”, according to Nasa.
The Earth, Moon & beyond! @OSIRISREx, our mission that is currently on its way to map & return samples from asteroid Bennu, captured the data that makes up this composite image of our home planet & Moon: https://t.co/QZOmwVTIRe pic.twitter.com/HmwLJk12Gb
— NASA (@NASA) January 2, 2018
The agency added: “But while the spacecraft might tell us some things about where we have been and where we are headed, it also can remind us of where we are right now.”
The composite image was made from data captured by OSIRIS-REx’s MapCam instrument.
Three images, of different colour wavelengths, were combined and colour-corrected and the moon was brightened to make it more easily visible, Nasa said.
The OSIRIS-REx is expected to reach Bennu in August 2018.