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Earthrise - Apollo 8

Earthrise - Apollo 8



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Earthrise - Apollo 8

This view of the rising Earth greeted the Apollo 8 astronauts as they came from behind the Moon after the lunar orbit insertion burn. The photo is displayed here in its original orientation, though it is more commonly viewed with the lunar surface at the bottom of the photo. Earth is about five degrees left of the horizon in the photo. The unnamed surface features on the left are near the eastern limb of the Moon as viewed from Earth. The lunar horizon is approximately 780 kilometers from the spacecraft. Height of the photographed area at the lunar horizon is about 175 kilometers

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Media ID 634569

© NASA

Apollo 8 Earthrise


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> Science > Space Exploration > The Moon

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EDITORS COMMENTS
This breathtaking image captures the moment when the Earth rose over the lunar horizon during the Apollo 8 mission in 18 December 1968. The astronauts, Frank Borman, Jim Lovell, and Bill Anders, had just completed the lunar orbit insertion burn, propelling them into a circular orbit around the Moon. As they emerged from the Moon's shadow, they were greeted with a stunning view of their home planet, which appeared about five degrees left of the horizon. The unnamed surface features on the left side of the photo are near the eastern limb of the Moon as viewed from Earth. The lunar horizon, approximately 780 kilometers from the spacecraft, is visible in the foreground, with a height of about 175 kilometers. The Earth's horizon, however, is not visible in this image as it was much farther away. This photograph, taken by Anders, is a reminder of the awe-inspiring sight that the Apollo 8 astronauts witnessed as they became the first humans to leave Earth's gravity and orbit another celestial body. It also marked a turning point in the space race, as it provided the world with a new perspective of Earth from space and rekindled a sense of wonder and appreciation for our planet and its place in the universe.

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