On Valentine’s day in 1990 Voyager 1 turned it’s cameras back towards the place it began its journey 12 years earlier and took one if its most famous photographs. After transmitting the image back to Earth Voyager shut down all of her on board cameras in order to save power for for the instruments that would measure the next big event in Voyager’s future. Becoming the first manmade object to enter interstellar space.
The Pale Blue Dot is a photograph of planet Earth taken in 1990 by the Voyager 1 spacecraft from a record distance of about 6 billion kilometers (3.7 billion miles) from Earth, as part of the solar system Family Portrait series of images. In the photograph, Earth is shown as a tiny dot (0.12 pixel in size) against the vastness of space. The Voyager 1 spacecraft, which had completed its primary mission and was leaving the Solar System, was commanded by NASA to turn its camera around and to take a photograph of Earth across a great expanse of space, at the request of Carl Sagan.
Subsequently, the title of the photograph was used by Sagan as the main title of his 1994 book, Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space.