Up From the Ocean
Waves crashed around my feet as I steadied my tripod and counted down until 8:04PM. That's when the International Space Station (ISS) was going to appear. It was a perfect pass, rising straight up over the horizon, before moving overhead and outshining everything else in the sky. The ISS orbits the Earth every 90 minutes at an altitude of 250 miles with a speed of 17,000 mph. At a cost of over $150 billion, the ISS is the single most expensive item ever constructed. The space station has been continuously occupied for 19 years by astronauts, who get to experience 16 sunsets and sunrises a day. The ISS is easily visible from Earth when sunlight reflects off of it's massive solar panels. Finding a spot in Orange County, California, that's dark enough to see the milky way is not easy. But at this time of year it's possible to look southwest over the darkest part of the ocean, while the rest of the sky is filled with light pollution and few stars. It took the ISS about 5 minutes to pass through the sky. I combined the satellite trail from 9 images with a single image of the stars to make it clearer.
- Kevin Palmer
- Image Size
- 4016x6016 / 14.1MB
2019, California, Capistrano Beach, International Space Station, Pacific Ocean, September, United States, astronomy, astrophotography, autumn, beach, blue, evening, fall, galaxy, kevin palmer, light pollution, milky way, night, nikon d750, sand, satellite, sigma 14mm f1.8, sky, space, starry, stars, vertical, water, waves
- Contained in galleries
- Recent Work, California, Night Sky