Earth Science: August 2015 Archives

Keith's note: Hey @AlGore according to NASA "These images were taken between 3:50 p.m. and 8:45 p.m. EDT on July 16." Guess what: that means that we saw an almost-new Moon here on Earth - to use your term we were looking at the "dark side" of the Moon which happened to be the near side of the Moon at the point - you know, the side of the Moon that faces Earth. DSCOVR was looking at the lunar farside which was almost fully lit at that point. It is not "dark" in this photo. Its called Science, Al.

Keith's update: As a reader notes NASA does not even know what "dark Side" means i.e. at least not consistently. The NASA press release for this image says "The series of test images shows the fully illuminated "dark side" of the moon that is never visible from Earth.

NASA itself is confused about this terminology: Common Moon Misconceptions, NASA: "Misconception: The same half of the Moon is in darkness all the time-i.e. that there is a dark side of the Moon. Reality: The Moon has no side that is constantly dark; the front and back are alternately lit as the Moon rotates. Far side is a more accurate term."

DSCOVR Shows Moon Crossing Face of Earth (Video)

"A NASA camera aboard the Deep Space Climate Observatory (DSCOVR) satellite captured a unique view of the moon as it moved in front of the sunlit side of Earth last month. The series of test images shows the fully illuminated "dark side" of the moon that is never visible from Earth. The images were captured by NASA's Earth Polychromatic Imaging Camera (EPIC), a four megapixel CCD camera and telescope on the DSCOVR satellite orbiting 1 million miles from Earth. From its position between the sun and Earth, DSCOVR conducts its primary mission of real-time solar wind monitoring for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)."


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