The Far Side of the Moon Is So Beautiful, It’s Art

For nearly all of human history, the far side of the moon has remained a mystery. We didn’t get the first pictures of what was once incorrectly termed the dark side of the moon—and cemented in pop culture as such by Pink Floyd’s 1973 album of the same name—until 1959 when the Soviet probe, Luna 3, made the first journey around the earth’s satellite.

Now, Nasa has released a time-lapse animation of the moon’s full 29.5-day phase period from a never before seen angle. The result is worthy of a place within a museum:

If you were hoping for signs of alien colonies, don’t hold your breath. To the layperson this rear view isn’t all that different than what they’ve looked up and seen on many a cloudless night. It’s round, gray, and has some spots on it—though markedly less spots than on the side that we see from earth.

What is remarkable is the second view within the video. It shows the earth as a marble-sized ball spinning around in a figure eight motion over the course of a month. You can even see the sun as a pinprick race across the screen as the moon’s far side drops completely into darkness.

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