Astronomy Picture of the Day

Crescent Neptune and Triton

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#89323 by @ 19.06.2006 00:00 - nach oben -
Crescent Neptune and Triton

Gliding silently through the outer
Solar System, the
Voyager 2 spacecraft camera captured
Neptune and
Triton together in crescent phase in 1989.

The above picture of the
gas giant planet and its
cloudy moon
was taken from behind just after closest approach.

It could not have been taken from
Earth because
Neptune never shows a crescent phase to sunward Earth.

unusual vantage point also robs
Neptune of its familiar
blue hue,
as sunlight seen from here is scattered forward,
and so is reddened like the
setting Sun.

Neptune is smaller but more massive than
Uranus, has several
dark rings, and emits more light than it receives from the Sun.

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