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.

June 28, 1997
See Explanation.  Clicking on the picture will download 
 the highest resolution version available.

Credit: The Viking Project, NASA

Explanation: "Yes, I have been to Barsoom again ..." begins John Carter in Edgar Rice Burroughs' 1913 science fiction classic "The Gods of Mars". In Burroughs' novels describing Carter's adventures on Mars, "Barsoom" is the local name for the red planet. Mars continues to inspire Earthdwellers' interests and imagination. Soon it will again be invaded by spacecraft from Earth. This dramatic picture of a crescent Mars was taken by NASA's Viking 2 spacecraft in 1976.

Tomorrow's picture: Asteroid and Moon

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Authors & editors: Robert Nemiroff (MTU) & Jerry Bonnell (USRA)
NASA Technical Rep.: Jay Norris. Specific rights apply.
A service of: LHEA at NASA/ GSFC
&: Michigan Tech. U.