Something great, something big, something very special that's never happened before is about to happen!
On July 19, 2013, Cassini's cameras will be turned in the direction of the sun and will capture the Earth, alongside Saturn and its rings, in an event that will mark the first time Earthlings know in advance their picture is being taken from a billion miles away.
It will be a day to revel in the extraordinary achievements in the exploration of our solar system that have made such an interplanetary photo session possible. And it will be a day for all of us to smile and celebrate life on the Pale Blue Dot.
Details concerning the images that will be taken of Earth are given below. Here are other things you should know about:
- The event is called The Day The Earth Smiled
- Two contests will be held in association with The Day The Earth Smiled: one an image contest and one a musical composition contest. Consider entering! For more information, go to http://diamondskyproductions.com
- If you wish to hold a gathering or party in your area in conjunction with this event, or you would like to know of other events in your area that you might attend, visit Astronomers Without Borders , the organization coordinating events around the world.
A full end-to-end mosaic of images of the ring system will be acquired over 4 hours on July 19. The Earth will be captured in a series of images taken between 21:27 to 21:42 UTC on that day, or 14:27 and 14:42 Pacific Daylight Time. LIGHT TRAVEL TIME IS ALREADY ACCOUNTED FOR IN THESE TIMES. This means you should be out and smiling, waving and celebrating at the indicated times, adjusted of course for your time zone. For people in the Pacific Daylight Time zone, that means 2:27 pm to 2:42 pm.
The graphics shown here illustrate the position of our planet relative to Saturn, and the portion of Earth that will be illuminated at the time its pictures are captured. (Press release can be found here.)
Jun 18, 2013:
Illuminated View - This graphic shows the view of Earth and the portion of its surface that will be illuminated during the Earth imaging event on July 19, 2013.