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This is What it Would Look Like if You Left Earth in a Spacecraft: VIDEO


Here's a beautiful clip comprised of photos of Earth from the spacecraft which recently sent back photos from the orbit of Mercury, as it left Earth:

The Mercury-bound MESSENGER spacecraft captured several stunning images of Earth during a gravity assist swingby of its home planet on Aug. 2, 2005. Several hundred images, taken with the wide-angle camera in MESSENGER's Mercury Dual Imaging System (MDIS), were sequenced into a movie documenting the view from MESSENGER as it departed Earth.

Comprising 358 frames taken over 24 hours, the movie follows Earth through one complete rotation. The spacecraft was 40,761 miles (65,598 kilometers) above South America when the camera started rolling on Aug. 2. It was 270,847 miles (435,885 kilometers) away from Earth - farther than the Moon's orbit - when it snapped the last image on Aug. 3.


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  1. You used the word 'comprised' incorrectly.

    Posted by: Me | Jul 20, 2011 2:24:37 PM

  2. Geunine question: If you were to leave earth in a space ship, would you do it straight out like it seems in the video or in some giant arc (as if you sling-shotted off the planet)?

    Posted by: Kyle | Jul 20, 2011 2:53:32 PM

  3. It would definitely be in an arc because you would still be breaking free from your inertia plus Earth's gravity to send you toward your destination in the straightest line possible.

    However, there's no way you would be able to know the trajectory from these images without another point of reference (like if the moon came in and out of the shots which only last for several hours.)

    Posted by: matt | Jul 21, 2011 1:02:38 AM

  4. Me@ comprised, made up of - it's the right word. Don't f#*k with Andy, he knows.

    Posted by: uffda | Jul 21, 2011 1:40:06 AM

  5. A decidedly cool 12 seconds of video!

    Posted by: Perry | Jul 21, 2011 4:21:58 PM

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