Moon with Earthshine over Paranal Observatory

(Image credit: ESO/B. Tafreshi/TWAN)

Sunlight reflects off the Earth and shines upon the moon, gaining the name "earthshine." This view shows a crescent moon setting over ESO's Paranal Observatory in Chile, illuminated mostly by earthshine. The photo was taken on 27 October 2011, and also shows Mercury and Venus. Staff is the premier source of space exploration, innovation and astronomy news, chronicling (and celebrating) humanity's ongoing expansion across the final frontier. We transport our visitors across the solar system and beyond through accessible, comprehensive coverage of the latest news and discoveries. For us, exploring space is as much about the journey as it is the destination.