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Planets Gallery

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Planets Featured Planets Print

Planets

© NASA/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

1900s, 1960s, 20th Century, 24 12 1968, 24 December 1969, 24th December 1969, Apollo 8, Apollo Program, Astronaut Photography, Beauty, Blue Marble, Earth, Earthrise, Environment, Environmental Awareness, Famous, Fragile, From Another World, From Space, Historical, History, Iconic, Lunar, Manned Spaceflight, Moon, Moon Orbit, Planet, Programme, Rising, Solar System, Space, Space Flight, Space Programme, Space Race, Spaceflight

Saturn silhouetted, Cassini image Featured Planets Print

Saturn silhouetted, Cassini image

Saturn silhouetted. Cassini spacecraft image of Saturn and its ring system with the Sun directly behind. The view revealed two previously unknown rings. One, associated with the orbits of the moons Janus and Epimetheus, lies in between the outer edge of the bright main rings and the thin grey/brown G Ring. The other, associated with the orbit of the moon Pallene, lies just inside the broad and diffuse outer E ring. Earth is seen as a bright dot at the ten o'clock position between the bright main rings and the G Ring. This is a composite of 165 images taken at infrared, visible light and ultraviolet wavelengths by the Cassini spacecraft on 15th September 2006, while it was around 2.2 million kilometres from Saturn

© Nasa/Jpl/Space Science Institute/Science Photo Library

Pioneer F Plaque Symbology Featured Planets Print

Pioneer F Plaque Symbology

The Pioneer F spacecraft, destined to be the first man made object to escape from the solar system into interstellar space, carries this pictorial plaque. It is designed to show scientifically educated inhabitants of some other star system, who might intercept it millions of years from now, when Pioneer was launched, from where, and by what kind of beings. (With the hope that they would not invade Earth.) The design is etched into a 6 inch by 9 inch gold-anodized aluminum plate, attached to the spacecraft's attenna support struts in a position to help shield it from erosion by interstellar dust. The radiating lines at left represents the positions of 14 pulsars, a cosmic source of radio energy, arranged to indicate our sun as the home star of our civilization. The "1-" symbols at the ends of the lines are binary numbers that represent the frequencies of these pulsars at the time of launch of Pioneer F relative of that to the hydrogen atom shown at the upper left with a "1" unity symbol. The hydrogen atom is thus used as a "universal clock, " and the regular decrease in the frequencies of the pulsars will enable another civilization to determine the time that has elapsed since Pioneer F was launched. The hydrogen is also used as a "universal yardstick" for sizing the human figures and outline of the spacecraft shown on the right. The hydrogen wavelength, about 8 inches, multiplied by the binary number representing "8" shown next to the woman gives her height, 64 inches. The figures represent the type of creature that created Pioneer. The man's hand is raised in a gesture of good will. Across the bottom are the planets, ranging outward from the Sun, with the spacecraft trajectory arching away from Earth, passing Mars, and swinging by Jupiter

© NASA