10 Ways Space Is Trying to Kill You

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The Farthest Pictures from Earth Ever Taken

The Farthest Pictures from Earth Ever Taken

NASA's New Horizons took a picture from 3.79 billion miles from Earth. HowStuffWorks takes a look at it.

Author's Note: 10 Ways Space Is Trying to Kill You

When I watched the television broadcast of Neil Armstrong setting foot on the moon in 1969, I have to admit that I was so caught up in the excitement of the moment, and had so much faith in the space program's technology, that it never occurred to me how much of a risk that he was taking. It didn't sink in until years later, when I learned that if Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin had been stranded on the moon, then-President Richard Nixon had a contingency plan in place. The telecommunications link would have been shut down, so that the public would be spared the trauma of watching the astronauts die, and instead Nixon would have given a speech in which he praised them for their bravery. Fortunately for all of us, he didn't have to give that speech.

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