MESSENGER, the first probe to orbit Mercury, took a black-and-white image from a distance of 61 million miles (98 million kilometers) as part of a campaign to search for natural satellites of the planet.
In the Cassini images Earth and the moon appear as mere dots-Earth a pale blue and the moon a stark white, visible between Saturn's rings.
It was the first time Cassini's highest- resolution camera captured Earth and its moon as two distinct objects.
It also marked the first time people on Earth had advance notice that their planet's portrait was being taken from interplanetary distances.
More than 20,000 people around the world participated.
Pictures of Earth from the outer solar system are rare because from that distance, Earth appears very close to our sun.
A camera's sensitive detectors can be damaged by looking directly at the sun, just as a human being can damage his or her retina by doing the same.
Cassini was able to take this image because the sun had temporarily moved behind Saturn from the spacecraft's point of view and most of the light was blocked.
In the MESSENGER image, Earth and the moon are less than a pixel, but appear very large because they are overexposed. (ANI)
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