Rare side view of the Moon

Rare side view of the Moon

. The Galileo spacecraft returned this image of the western limb and far side of the Moon on 8 December 1990, from a vantage point not possible from the Earth. It shows the bright far-side highland (left) and the near-side Oceanus Procellarum (top right). The dark spots near the center are Mare Orientale, about 900 thousand meters across; it is barely visible form Earth at the western limb of the lunar near side. The huge South Pole - Aitken impact basin, a large circular depression about 2.6 million meters in diameter, is the large dark region at the lower left. (Courtesy of JPL and NASA.)

Copyright 2010, Professor Kenneth R. Lang, Tufts University