This view of the Earth shows a wonderfully unique but physically impossible view of
     the southern hemisphere and Antarctica. While a spacecraft could find itself directly
     over the Earth's pole, roughly half of the image should be in darkness! This view
     was created by mosaicing together several images taken by Galileo over a 24 hour
     period and projecting them as they would be seen from above the pole. The
     continents of South America, Africa, and Australia are respectively seen at the
     middle left, upper right, and lower right. The slightly bluish ice and snow of
     Antarctica include large ice shelves (upper left, lower middle), a broad fan of
     broken offshore pack ice (lower left and middle) and continental glaciers protruding
     into the sea (lower right). The regularly spaced weather systems are prominent.

     Most spacecraft travelling near the Earth's poles are in very low Earth orbit, and
     cannot acquire panoramic shots like this one. Galileo's view of the southern
     hemisphere, combined with the spacecraft's special spectral properties (four
     separate narrowband filters that measure the brightness of reflected light at specific
     infrared wavelengths), led to a number of unique observations. For example,
     Galileo's cameras distinguished between ice and high stratospheric clouds, allowing
     scientists to study the correlation between these clouds and growth of the ozone
     hole.

     The Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA manages the mission for NASA'is
     Office of Space Science, Washington , DC.

     This image and other images and data received from Galileo are posted on the
     World Wide Web, on the Galileo mission home page at URL
     http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/galileo.