Watch the Moon As It Crosses Earth From 1 Million Miles Away

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By Keith Wagstaff

The "dark side" of the moon looks even cooler when seen crossing the Earth from a million miles away.

NASA's Deep Space Climate Observatory (DSCOVR) has taken some pretty amazing images from its position between the Earth and Sun. An animation released Wednesday by NASA shows images of the far side — which is normally hidden from human eyes — as the moon passes in front of our planet.

DSCOVR was launched back in February. Its main mission is to use its Earth Polychromatic Imaging Camera (EPIC) camera to monitor solar wind in real-time.

Twice a year it's in the perfect position to view the moon and Earth together. These images were taken on July 16 as the moon moved across the Pacific Ocean.

"It is surprising how much brighter Earth is than the moon," Adam Szabo, a DSCOVR project scientist, said in a statement. "Our planet is a truly brilliant object in dark space compared to the lunar surface."

Related: SpaceX Launches DSCOVR Satellite at Last, but Skips Rocket Landing

The EPIC camera rapidly takes 10 images in a row, with filters ranging from ultraviolet to near infrared. These "natural" pictures were created by combining the red, blue, and green images into one. Starting next month, NASA fans will get a regular dose of eye candy when photos from DSCOVR are posted online daily.