Astronomy Picture of the Day

Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.

2013 August 24
See Explanation.  Clicking on the picture will download
 the highest resolution version available.

Earth Waves at Saturn
Credit: NASA, JPL-Caltech, Cassini Project, Denizens of Earth

Explanation: This friendly photo collage is constructed from more than 1,400 images shared by denizens of planet Earth as part of the Cassini Mission's July 19th Wave at Saturn event. The base picture of Earth corresponds to the view from the Saturn-orbiting Cassini spacecraft on that date, when its own cameras recorded images including planet Earth as a pale blue dot in the background. Of course, Saturn was 9.65 Astronomical Units away at the time, so it took light from all the waving Earth dwellers just over 80 minutes to travel there. Want to smile? Download and zoom in to the full-resolution (28MB jpg file) collage image available here.

Tomorrow's picture: when galaxies collide

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