Venus, photographed in the UV by Venus Express, 18-19 February 2007. As well as the clouds, there are some camera artefacts which appear to move with the planet’s “rotation” (Venus rotates extremely slowly, and the apparent rotation here must be caused by the changing position of the spacecraft).
For those playing at home, the raw data for Venus Express is in the Atmospheres node of the PDS, which is why it’s taken so long for me to post a decent Venus gif (who knew there were pictures in the Atmospheres node…?), and also from the ESA’s website via FTP.
(Blog note: This is the 300th gif posted to this Tumblr, a postiversary of sorts, not counting a lone text post and a couple of “doubles”, where the same sequence is shown twice with slightly different editing. When I started this blog, I wasn’t sure I’d make it to 50 posts, and 200 was my most optimistic goal. And there’s still a bit of life in it yet: Cassini’s archive is enormous and rewards multiple trawls through it; the astronaut photos are often harder to work with gif-wise because of their unsteady hands, but there’s certainly some interesting material in there. I think there’s enough to keep the daily updates going till sometime in August.
Thanks to those who’ve been following along; and for those late to the party, there’s plenty in the blog’s archives now, organised by tag (e.g., Voyager, Io). Almost all major solar system bodies are represented, if there’s a decent time-lapse animation of them (though there’s a couple more asteroids still to come!).)