Sunday, April 13, 2008

Yuri's Planet

"On April 12th, 1961, Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Alexseyevich Gagarin became the first human in space. His remotely controlled Vostok 1 spacecraft lofted him to an altitude of 200 miles and carried him once around planet Earth. Commenting on the first view from space he reported, "The sky is very dark; the Earth is bluish. Everything is seen very clearly". Alan Shepard, the first US astronaut, would not be launched until almost a month later and then on a comparatively short suborbital flight."

See a much better version of the picture at the Astronomy Picture of the Day (APOD) page, which shows much more subtle detail.

Credit: Astronaut Photography of Earth "ISS007-E-10807 (21 July 2003) --- This view of Earth’s horizon as the sunsets over the Pacific Ocean was taken by an Expedition 7 crewmember onboard the International Space Station (ISS). Anvil tops of thunderclouds are also visible." Image courtesy of the Image Science & Analysis Laboratory, NASA Johnson Space Center.

Thanks to Making Light blog

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