Rosetta image of the Moon

The Moon and Europe - Rosetta OSIRIS images

16 November 2007

As Rosetta closed in on Earth, swung by and then left on its course again, several instruments on the spacecraft were busy taking snaps. As it swung away, the OSIRIS camera also caught glimpses of the Moon.

The Moon was imaged with the OSIRIS Narrow Angle Camera (NAC) at 07:36 CET, about nine hours after Rosetta's closest approach to Earth.

Rosetta’s second Earth swing-by
Rosetta’s second Earth swing-by

OSIRIS has been designed to image faint objects, so a neutral density filter was placed in the optical path to reduce the sensitivity of the camera to one-fiftieth. The above image was acquired through the far-focus red filter of the camera (750 nanometres).

The below image of Earth is targeted roughly at Greece. It was taken with the OSIRIS Wide Angle Camera (WAC) during the swing-by.

Europe at night, seen with OSIRIS
Europe at night, seen with OSIRIS
Europe at night, seen with OSIRIS

Major urban areas of Europe can be seen illuminated at night.

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