NEW YORK (Web Desk) – Cameras orbiting the moon and operated by Arizona State University have captured a striking image showing the Earth rising over the surface of the moon.


The Sahara desert can be seen peeking through swirling clouds in the right-hand corner of the image. Just beyond that is Saudi Arabia. The South American coast is visible on the left, The Arizona Republic reported.



The image was composed of a series of images taken Oct. 12 as a minivan-size NASA spacecraft called the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter zoomed around the moon. Getting the image was complicated, said ASU Professor Mark Robinson, who is the lead scientist on the orbiter’s cameras.

The spacecraft had to roll on its side to snap the image while speeding by at more than 3,580 miles per hour. The orbiter was about 83 miles above the moon at the time.  Robinson said the team tried a practice run in the summer that almost worked. They regrouped and tried again in October.