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File:Blue Marble photo - Apollo 17.jpg
"Blue Marble" from Apollo 17
- Image AS17-148-22727 -- December 7, 1972
- First 'Whole Earth' photograph taken by a human being.
"As they left home, the crew had a superb view of the full disc of the Earth, lit from horizon to horizon. Behind the camera was Harrison (Jack) Schmitt, a geologist and geophysicist who, according to [Apollo Director of Photography, Richard] Underwood, understood the essential value of pictures of the planet Earth as you moved away...
"I kept telling Jack... that will be the classic picture. Make sure you get it after you go translunar... that one's at 28,000 miles. That's a perfect picture and he aimed it beautifully.' " -- Apollo Moon Missions (©1998)
NASA's Blue Marble public photo gallery...
NASA originally released the "Blue Marble" photo on Christmas Eve 1972 -- four years to the day after Apollo 8's Christmas eve "Earthrise" photo.
Astronaut Cernan: "You have to literally just pinch yourself and ask yourself the question, silently: Do you know where you are at this point in time and space, and in reality and in existence, when you can look out the window and... it's home, it's people, family, love, life -- and besides that it is beautiful. You can see from pole to pole and across oceans and continents and you can watch it turn and there's no strings holding it up, and it's moving in a blackness that is almost beyond conception."
"Earthrise" on Christmas eve, 1968
"The Earthrise photograph of 1968 and the Blue Marble photograph of 1972... They represent the beginning and the summit of whole Earth awareness. But while the Earthrise showed the Earth in space, 'Blue marble' showed the Earth alone. Filling the frame, centered on Africa (mankind's place of origin), and looking both alone and alive, its message was not 'space' but 'home'. It was a record of a particular historical moment: mankind's last trip (to date) beyond Earth's orbit..." -- Earthrise (©2008)
Blue-Thoughts as we spin thru space
Memories of "Earthrise" as astronauts circled the moon, months before Apollo 11 when humans first walked on the Moon, July 20th, 1969
Looking back, DSCOVR, Christmas eve 2015
Click on a date/time to view the file as it appeared at that time.
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