Chandrayaan-1's first picture of the Moon
Posted by Emily Lakdawalla
11-11-2008 11:11 CST
Here is the first image taken by Chandrayaan-1 of the Moon, taken while it was still in Earth orbit on November 4. It's a bit underwhelming -- until you realize that the camera was designed to take photos of the Moon from a distance 3,000 times closer than this.Apart from the low resolution of the image there's also a pixelated nature to the gray levels, particularly obvious near the terminator (day-night boundary), that suggests to me that the exposure was set a little short, so they had to crank up the brightness quite a bit. This may be due to the fact that the Moon is in a crescent phase; at this high phase angle, a smaller fraction of the Sunlight that strikes the surface is reflected back to the observer than there would be if the Moon were fuller-phase.
It may not be an impressive image but it's a milestone, and there is hopefully much more to come.
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