Here’s something you don’t see every day. It’s our moon, as seen from its far side, crossing the face of the Earth. A NASA camera aboard the Deep Space Climate Observatory (DSCOVR) satellite was conducting a series of test images when it captured this view of the moon in July, 2015.
NASA’s Earth Polychromatic Imaging Camera (EPIC), a four megapixel CCD camera and telescope on the DSCOVR satellite orbiting 1 million miles (1.6 million km) from Earth, created the images used to make this animation.
From its position between the sun and Earth, DSCOVR conducts its primary mission of real-time solar wind monitoring for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
Bottom line: In July 2015 – while testing a spaceborne camera – a satellite caught images of the moon crossing the Earth’s face. The images show the moon’s far side, the side never seen from Earth.
Deborah Byrd created the EarthSky radio series in 1991 and EarthSky.org in 1994. Today, she serves as Editor-in-Chief of this website. She has won a galaxy of awards from the broadcasting and science communities, including having an asteroid named 3505 Byrd in her honor. A science communicator and educator since 1976, Byrd believes in science as a force for good in the world and a vital tool for the 21st century. "Being an EarthSky editor is like hosting a big global party for cool nature-lovers," she says.