Stunning images have come back from the Japanese Kayuga spacecraft orbiting the moon, showing the Earth rising over the moon’s south pole region, in an image stunningly reminiscent of the famous Apollo 8 image of Earthrise in December of 1968.
The Kayuga orbiter was launched in September, and is tasked to obtain scientific data of the lunar origin and evolution and to develop the technology for the future lunar exploration. More information, plus HD movies of the moon, can be found at the mission website. And also, if you’re curious as to the color of the moon in the images, it is correct. The moon is actually quite dark. The moon is not as reflective as the earth is, only giving back approximately 1/2 of the light shining on it. One can only hope there will be some Blu-Ray DVD’s of these hi-definition movies in the future.