AUG 31, 2017 06:07 AM PDT

NASA Shares Shot of 2017 Solar Eclipse From Moon's Perspective

The 2017 American solar eclipse may have already come and gone, but while most people walked outside with ISO-certified glasses to stare at the Sun while it took place, NASA went above and beyond to capture the event from different perspectives.

Just this week, the space agency shared an awesome illustration from the viewpoint of the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) that shows how the Solar Eclipse cast large a shadow over the United States.

The shadow was so large that it covered most of the United States.

Image Credit: NASA/LRO

The image shows the most defined part of the shadow manifesting just above Nashville, Tennessee.

To make the shot possible, NASA commanded the LRO to turn 180º, so its Narrow-Angle Camera faced the Earth instead of the Moon’s surface.

The image capture began around 2:25:30 PM Eastern time, but NASA notes how the camera uses a technique very different than most point-and-shoot cameras to create a picture.

Rather than grabbing an instantaneous shot, the Narrow-Angle Camera took 18 seconds to capture all the data needed to form this shot. The image was built line-by-line until 52,224 lines in total were composed to generate a full picture.

NASA says the LRO was traveling north from the Moon’s south pole at 3,579 miles per hour when it took the shot, and that the Moon’s massive shadow was moving across the United States at more than 1,500 miles per hour.

Related: Here's when the next solar eclipse will sweep across the United States

Another fascinating tidbit, NASA touts the LRO didn’t experience any hiccups in power despite being in the Moon’s shadow throughout the image capture.

NASA launched the LRO in 2009, but because it operates on solar power, it has a long life expectancy ahead. Not only does the orbiter provide useful information about our Moon, but sometimes in cases such as this, it can provide information about our Earth from the Moon’s perspective.

Source: NASA

About the Author
  • Fascinated by scientific discoveries and media, Anthony found his way here at LabRoots, where he would be able to dabble in the two. Anthony is a technology junkie that has vast experience in computer systems and automobile mechanics, as opposite as those sound.
You May Also Like
OCT 23, 2019
Space & Astronomy
OCT 23, 2019
Will India Be the First Nation to Land a Spacecraft on the Moon's South Pole?
India’s space agency, dubbed the Indian Space Research Organization (or ISRO for short), is aiming to land a spacecraft at the Moon’s South Pol...
OCT 23, 2019
Space & Astronomy
OCT 23, 2019
Here's What the Earth Would Be Like if it Spun Sideways
Planet Earth – the place we all call our home – rotates on its axis with a 23.5-degree tilt. Planetary scientists think that an early solar sys...
OCT 23, 2019
Space & Astronomy
OCT 23, 2019
Here's Why Hubble Can't Photograph Pluto Clearly
NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope is responsible for capturing some of the most detailed images of distant galaxies, but it isn’t particularly usef...
OCT 23, 2019
Space & Astronomy
OCT 23, 2019
Spacewalking Astronauts Install New Docking Adapter on International Space Station
It’s been business as usual for astronauts and cosmonauts on the International Space Station for the past several weeks, but there was a bit more exc...
OCT 23, 2019
Space & Astronomy
OCT 23, 2019
The Moon is Shrinking, and Here's Why
When the Moon was conceived during the formation of the solar system, it was comprised of incredibly hot material. Years’ worth of space rock impacts...
OCT 23, 2019
Space & Astronomy
OCT 23, 2019
Astronomers Find At Least 20 More Moons Orbiting Saturn
Just this past week, Saturn overtook Jupiter as the planet in our solar system with the highest number of moons. Researchers from the Carnegie Institution...
Loading Comments...