NASA Recreates Famous Earthrise Moment from the View of the Apollo 8 Astronauts

To celebrate the 45th anniversary of the historic Apollo 8 “Earthrise” photograph, the Scientific Visualization Studio at NASA has digitally recreated the nostalgic moment exactly as the astronauts would have seen it. What used to be just an iconic photograph has now been turned into a scientific CG animation constructed using the latest data from NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) and historical photographs and audio from the actual voyage!

In December of 1968, the Apollo 8 crew became the first people to venture from our home planet to another celestial body in space, plotting the course for Neil Armstrong to set foot on the moon just months later. But to everyone’s astonishment, as the astronaut who took the picture William Anders later recalled, “We came all this way to explore the moon, and the most important thing is that we discovered the Earth.”

Now you can virtually experience the same journey that left these astronauts rising to their feet in awe, which should hold you over at least until those Mars vacation packages become affordable.

NASA   Earthrise  The 45th Anniversary

NASA   Earthrise  framed

The Apollo 8 Earthrise event served as turning point in our exploration of space, and to recreate that moment and experience it as only three people have experienced it, is thrilling. Scientifically, LRO data is being used to fundamentally change our understanding of the moon.”
– Goddard LRO project scientist Noah Petro

Video by NASA Goddard

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