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.

November 3, 1996
See Explanation.  Clicking on the picture will download 
 the highest resolution version available.

Surveyor Night Launch

Explanation: In early November of 1967, a dramatic night launch of an Atlas Centaur rocket from Cape Canaveral lofted the successful Surveyor 6 spacecraft toward the Moon. The Surveyor series of robotic probes carried out the first US lunar soft landings in preparation for the Apollo program. Still in use today, Atlas Centaur rockets launched many lunar and planetary probes in the 60s and 70s.

Tomorrow's picture: The Martian Spring

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Authors & editors: Robert Nemiroff (MTU) & Jerry Bonnell (USRA)
NASA Technical Rep.: Jay Norris. Specific rights apply.
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