Although this may not look like it, it really is the International Space Station. This picture was taken by Trevor Mahlmann whilst he was on a flight from New York to Chicago. Or rather, it’s really a collection of photos. And although all it seems to be is just one line going across the photo, which could’ve been drawn on, a fair amount of technical knowledge would’ve been needed for this.
Trevor Mahlmann wants to be an astronaut and so his interest in space is clear, and it was at 10pm whilst on his flight that he spotted this. At the start of his flight he was wandering if he’d see it, and so logging into the, no doubt very expensive wifi, checked online and after checking his current location, it was apparent that 30 minutes later he’d be able to catch the pass. After a number of test shots and getting the GoPro set up perfectly, it was 10pm and Mahlmann set the GoPro to take the exposure.
He used his GoPro camera which he set to take exposures of 30 seconds in length over ten minutes. Whilst still in the air, he then put 12 of them together using Adobe’s LightRoom software, and finally he was able to send it out to the world wide web.
As well as the line that you see being the ISS passing by, you can also see the constellations above, including Cepheus, Polaris and Cygnus. Not only did he get this picture out though, the NASA twitter feed tweeted it out, as the first non-NASA picture of this occurring.
One question that may be hanging over everyone’s heads is who takes a GoPro on a plane with them!? Well, Trevor was actually using it to take a timelapse of his trips when he flies, which he uploads to YouTube, and this is the first time since starting that he’s stopped recording for anything. But it certainly is a very good reason to stop!