Amazing Long Exposure Photographs Taken From Space
Space, it’s the final frontier where no one can hear you scream, according to those movie and TV taglines anyway. It’s also a place of great beauty, as anyone who’s spent five minutes watching a Carl Sagan or Neil deGrasse Tyson YouTube video can attest. But Sagan and Tyson don’t hold a monopoly when it comes to the wonders of the cosmos.
Astronaut and Expedition 31 flight engineer Don Pettit has been taking stunning long exposure photographs from aboard the International Space Station from between 5th April and 23rd May this year. The resulting exotic images NASA have released as a Flickr set called ISS Star Trails.
These fantastical-looking photos not only show the stars streaming by the station but also the light emitting from the towns and cities of Earth, flying past like a lightspeed scene in a sci-fi flick as the Earth is showered in cosmic light from stars and auroras. On the Flickr page Pettit explains how he did it:
My star trail images are made by taking a time exposure of about 10 to 15 minutes. However, with modern digital cameras, 30 seconds is about the longest exposure possible, due to electronic detector noise effectively snowing out the image. To achieve the longer exposures I do what many amateur astronomers do. I take multiple 30-second exposures, then ‘stack’ them using imaging software, thus producing the longer exposure.
See the full set here.
[via This Is Colossal]