Questions tagged [photography]

Questions on taking images in space or of spacecraft.

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106
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1answer
7k views

How many extraterrestrial bodies have hosted a “lander” which returned images?

For the purposes of this question, we will consider a "lander" any probe which was sent to the surface of an extraterrestrial body or entered the atmosphere to a point which exceeds an air pressure of ...
80
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4answers
15k views

How did Apollo 16 capture this full photograph of the Moon's far side?

Apollo 16 famously photographed the far side of the Moon, as seen below. This seems odd to me. Apollo 16 orbited the Moon at an orbit of only 100 km. It seems too close to get this kind of a ...
54
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1answer
10k views

Which Apollo “mystery” was said to be finally solved by a better rendering engine?

I remember reading several years ago about a mystery or puzzle about a photograph from an Apollo moon landing mission that had to do with why someone's suit was as bright as it was in the photo. There ...
45
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2answers
7k views

How did the Apollo astronauts change film in their cameras?

Part of Apollo astronaut training was learning to be a pretty good photographer without a viewfinder. The Hasselblad 500EL Data Camera used magazines with 160 color/200 B&W exposures on 70mm film. ...
36
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2answers
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Was the “Earthrise” witnessed by Apollo 8 the first available “full” photo of the Earth?

Was the video/photos taken during the earth-rise on the Apollo 8 flight the first "blue marble"-esque photo? I've heard the image equated to the "earth's first selfie" and question the technical ...
36
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5answers
11k views

Is photography from a satellite good enough to make out a person on the ground?

When I first saw Google Maps satellite view many years ago, I remember being greatly impressed (and somewhat surprised) with the image quality, considering the photographs came from up there in space. ...
33
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1answer
2k views

Have any of the rovers ever recorded a solar eclipse on Mars?

I've heard a rumor that Curiosity rover sent a recording about Phobos covering the Sun on the Martian sky. Did it happen? If yes, how frequently could such things be recorded?
33
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2answers
8k views

Has anyone in space seen or photographed a simple laser pointer from Earth?

In the question How to make a green LED as visually bright as a 0 magnitude star? I worked out that a 100 mA green LED with a 10° half-angle 18 kilometers away would be as bright as a 0th magnitude ...
29
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1answer
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Who took the Curiosity rover's self-portrait photo from the surface of Mars?

Curiosity is missing an arm, can you help us find it? The self-portrait photograph of the Curiosity rover from the Gale Crater is probably one of the most well known ones of this particular rover of ...
28
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3answers
12k views

What did the sky actually look like from the Moon?

All the photographs I've seen from the Apollo missions show lunar features in good detail and exposure. This of course means that the shutter is not open long enough for light from stars to develop on ...
20
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1answer
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Has the Earth's red atmosphere rim ever been photographed?

In the Wikipedia article on Lunar eclipse there's given an image of how the Earth would look from the eclipsed Moon: This is obviously a schematic drawing. So I wonder, has the Earth ever been ...
17
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3answers
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Usage of Apollo Lunar Surface Hasselblad Camera with 500 mm lens?

Here is a list of photographic cameras used for Apollo 16. There were two Lunar Surface Data Hasselblads equipped with a 60 mm lens for both astronauts to be used with chest mounts to the space suits....
16
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2answers
4k views

What are the small crosses on space pictures, and what's their purpose?

Often I see small crosses on space pictures like this. They are regularly spaced, thin and black. What are them? What's their purpose?
16
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1answer
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What are the black and white circular patterns on the Curiosity rover?

On the Mars Curiosity rover, there are black and white circular patterns or marks spaced around the rover, as seen here marked in lime green:     What are these? If I had to guess, ...
14
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4answers
5k views

How many photographs are there of the whole Earth?

Most of the representations of the Earth from space that one sees are inventions, meant to clearly show the things people most want to see - the outlines of the continents, instead of mostly clouds as ...
14
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6answers
1k views

Is the “Mars blue dune” actually blue? And what makes it so?

NASA recently released an image of a blue dune on Mars. The accompanying story seems to suggest to me that it is a false color image - some property of that part of the image is detected and rendered ...
14
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2answers
767 views

Two week mark; has Mayak (Маяк) been spotted yet? Reflector deployed? Astronomy “ruined”?

Deborah Byrd's article Have you seen the Mayak satellite? explains Mayak with a bit of humor: A team of young Russians – led by Moscow State Mechanical Engineering University (MAMI) – managed to ...
13
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7answers
4k views

Where are the pictures during the time the pictures are sent from space to home?

Obviously the pics aren't floating around, but how can I explain this to a 10 year old?
13
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4answers
10k views

How do astronauts take pictures from outside the ISS?

I've seen multiple images taken from outside the Space Station like this one or this one and even timelapses from far outside showing the solar panels moving over time. Is there a satellite ...
13
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1answer
1k views

Have astronauts in space suits ever taken selfies? If so, how?

Have astronauts in space suits ever taken selfies? Were selfie sticks used? If not, how was this feat accomplished?
11
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2answers
1k views

Picture of equipment left on the Moon?

When people visited the Moon, they left sizeable items behind. I know that taking picture of this from Earth is incredibly hard, but: Did someone try? And what pictures do we have?
11
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1answer
976 views

Have there been any photos taken of a total Earth-Sun eclipse from the Moon, or its vicinity?

There's a supermoon lunar eclipse ongoing right now (Sept. 27/28, 2015), and it got me thinking that a great way to show to people why the Moon is reddish -- when eclipsed by the Earth -- would be if ...
10
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4answers
507 views

Single-shot Blue Marble pictures

I was quite surprised to read in today's Earth Observatory Picture of the Day that the DSCOVR spacecraft, currently en route to the $L_1$ Lagrange point, will be the first spacecraft able to see the ...
9
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2answers
3k views

Why is so much of InSight visible in this image?

It seems really strange to me that there is so little visible of the surface in this image, it mostly appears to be the deck of InSight. Why is so little visible?
9
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2answers
3k views

Most distant photo of the sun?

What is the most distant photo taken of our sun? I am guessing it may be from Voyager 1, but can't find an actual photo anywhere.
9
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2answers
350 views

Can ISS astronauts see the lava from the Kilauea volcano at night?

The google news said "Lava from the Kilauea volcano can be seen from space" but it just links to the YouTube video of the same name. The screen shot of the video below shows a small ESA credit at the ...
9
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1answer
230 views

How does the ISS Transit Finder website get the position of the ISS so accurately?

The recent Petapixel article How to Shoot the ISS Flying Across the Face of the Moon gives a lot of detailed, helpful advice for photographing transits of the ISS across the disk of the Moon. For ...
8
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2answers
267 views

When approaching target planets/moons, how frequently do spacecrafts take photographs?

When a spacecraft approaches its target (whatever is it a moon or a planet), how do they take photographs about it? Do they take as much as possible, or just in certain situations? What does it ...
8
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1answer
719 views

What is making the glow from this image of STS-135 going home, de-orbit burn or re-entry?

I found the image below in a NASA image gallery for 2014. There, the text only says: This unprecedented view of the space shuttle Atlantis, appearing like a bean sprout against clouds and city ...
8
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1answer
416 views

Has the Earth's shadow on the Moon (lunar eclipse) ever been photographed from Space?

The questions Has the Moon's shadow on the Earth (solar eclipse) ever been photographed from beyond Earth orbit? Is this the only eclipse where Moon's shadow on the Earth (umbra) has been ...
8
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0answers
141 views

Was this the first-ever photo of a full moon very close to lunar new year?

Limiting the concept of "lunar new year" to "Chinese New Year" (since there are many lunar and lunisolar calendars, the latter of which the traditional Chinese one is a widely used example), is this ...
7
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1answer
2k views

Why not a “live” visual connection with Curiosity on Mars all the time?

Note: Got the idea for this question by @uhoh's question: "Has anything close to video ("live" or otherwise) been shot in space from beyond the Moon ? To have the "feeling" of a "live" connection ...
7
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1answer
765 views

Did the medium range KTM tracking cameras for the Shuttle really have a “150 inch lens”?

The Curious Droid YouTube video How did NASA get those great film shots of Apollo and the Shuttle? found here and linked-to in this comment contains the following passage starting at ...
7
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2answers
322 views

Why doesn't Rayleigh Scattering obstruct Earth from space?

When looking at the day sky, you see a solid blue, with no stars, Moon only rarely, barely visible. But photos of Earth show clear colors of the continents, yellow Sahara, green amazon forests. There'...
7
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2answers
216 views

Film emulsion on the moon-were the cameras heated?

Re: moon photos : What prevented the film emulsion in the camera used on the moon from freezing and cracking, or simply becoming insensitive from cold? Is film resistant to such extreme cold? What ...
7
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2answers
659 views

What is this huge, red, blinking light structure on Earth seen from the ISS in this video?

The video ESA video Progress launch timelapse seen from space is of course striking for many reasons. However there is a strange, blinking light structure on Earth that's quite puzzling! I've added ...
7
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2answers
660 views

Why does NASA still use film cameras?

According to this video, NASA still operates some cameras for tracking rocket launches that use film: According to NASA, they even have some film cameras placed around their launch site loaded ...
6
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3answers
2k views

Why is taking a picture of the moon surface from earth possible but taking one of an artificial satellite is difficult?

After reading this question and seeing an image of ISS shot from earth, a doubt came in mind that if shooting moon from earth with high details is possible, why is it difficult to shoot artificial ...
6
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3answers
401 views

Did Apollo-11 astronauts rehearse their photoshoots on Earth?

After asking Have astronauts in space suits ever taken selfies? If so, how? I started to think about the photo below, and especially the cropped and rotated section that I found in the Wikipedia ...
6
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2answers
794 views

Why does the NOAA require a permit to be issued to stream images of the earth?

While reading this question, I was interested to learn that the NOAA requires a permit for any entity to film the earth from space. Is there any reason why such a policy is in place? Note: This ...
6
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3answers
280 views

Where can I find high quality “descent” photos at as many different altitudes as possible?

I'm working on a graphical simulation and I'd like to get the "look and feel" to seem as realistic as possible. Other than Apollo landing videos (which seem pretty limited and low quality obviously) ...
6
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2answers
96 views

Which space operators public or private, outside of NASA, allow usage of their space imagery?

NASA does not copyright their images and allows usage of their photos for free for many uses. There are a few restrictions on commercial use, primarily to keep current staff out of commercials. ...
5
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1answer
160 views

Why are there double shadows in this Apollo 14 magazine?

In magazine AS14/KK there are clear double LEM shadows present where only one should be. I can't find any evidence of double exposure. How did this happen? I've even found 2 shadows that overlap and ...
5
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2answers
541 views

How to determine rocket launch path for photography?

I want to start space launch photography and have been wondering how to get the path in frame. I have been looking at rocket paths and it seems like there is some kind of navigation that guides the ...
5
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1answer
105 views

Where to look for newest images from Chang'e 3?

The tomorrow lunar eclipse is bound to look spectacular from the Moon - and as far as I know, Chang'e 3 is still fully operational, including its 3 high-definition stereo cameras. That means a chance ...
4
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2answers
410 views

Has the Moon's shadow on the Earth (solar eclipse umbra) ever been photographed from beyond Earth orbit?

Here is a great answer with photos of the shadow of the moon on the Earth's surface (umbra) during a total solar eclipse, taken by real people in space, and links to even more of them. I think there's ...
4
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2answers
572 views

Do adaptive optics work the other way around?

Could the current technology used in adaptive optics to see far into the sky, be used to improve satellite or even aerial photographs?
4
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1answer
704 views

Has there been any mission to land on a planet or moon in the Outer Solar System?

Are there any planets or moons in the Outer Solar System, where a man-made object has landed and made photographs of its surface? I can remember an article somewhere that said there's only one moon ...
4
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1answer
115 views

What's this mini-cupola-looking object in this photo from the ISS?

(I went through this exercise for my own benefit, so I figured I'd post it) Recently stay-extended astronaut Christina Hammock Koch posted this image to Facebook today and the object indicated by the ...
4
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1answer
527 views

Considerations for Taking Photos from CubeSat in LEO

When taking photos in space with consumer grade cameras modules, what factors need to be taken into account? For example, is auto-focus needed? Will the photos end up washed out because of the ...