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International Space Station Solar Transit

Discussion in 'Astrophotography' started by iansmith, Apr 28, 2014.

  1. iansmith

    iansmith Mu-43 Regular

    30
    Mar 19, 2014
    I'm quite a happy camper today! This was my first attempt at this, and I think it came out about as good as one could expect given my equipment and location. The 75-300 is a nice lens but a telescope it is not!

    This is the ISS captured as is passed in front of the sun. I took MJPEG video of the event and then combined all the frames.

    This was NOT easy. This sort of transit only happens about once every one or two weeks within a 100 mile radius of any given location, and usually it happens with the sun too low, or with bad weather. In this shot the ISS was 300 miles away and moving at 17,000 miles an hour. It took half a second to cross the sun, giving me 16 frames to work with.

    I used ISS Transit Prediction for Android to find out where and when I needed to be ahead of time.

    Anyway, here it is. Sunspots too which was a bonus.

    Captured with the Olympus 75-300 on an E-P5.

    TS940x940~2908526.
     
    • Like Like x 49
  2. RedNumber5

    RedNumber5 Mu-43 Regular

    158
    Dec 13, 2010
    Antioch, CA
    Nice combined shots. I've seen pictures of jets crossing in front of the sun but never the ISS.
     
  3. MajorMagee

    MajorMagee Mu-43 All-Pro

    Feb 24, 2011
    Dayton, OH
    What did you use to filter out the sunlight, welders glass?
     
  4. OzRay

    OzRay Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 29, 2010
    South Gippsland, Australia
    Ray, not Oz
    It's a great shot, but I really think it would look better with just one image of the ISS against the sun. Right now it looks kind of like a zipper across the sun.
     
  5. iansmith

    iansmith Mu-43 Regular

    30
    Mar 19, 2014
    I used something called Baader Solar Film, it's designed to filter out the sun to levels the human eye or a camera can safely view. Doesn't distort or heavily color the sun like ND filters of welders glass.
     
  6. iansmith

    iansmith Mu-43 Regular

    30
    Mar 19, 2014
    Hows this? :)

    B6Fz1Co.
     
    • Like Like x 11
  7. OzRay

    OzRay Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 29, 2010
    South Gippsland, Australia
    Ray, not Oz
    I think that makes the shot much more dramatic and in a sense 'scientific', the sunspots really add to the effect as well. It's actually a better shot than what I remember seeing posted in some tech article a little while ago, where the authors were all agog.
     
  8. iansmith

    iansmith Mu-43 Regular

    30
    Mar 19, 2014
    Awesome, thanks. Crazy what can be done with a digital camera and a zoom lens! Even if it is an amazing one. :)
     
  9. OzRay

    OzRay Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 29, 2010
    South Gippsland, Australia
    Ray, not Oz
    Just as an aside, is there a colour version of this? Just curious to see how it would compare if the sun were yellow(ish).
     
  10. iansmith

    iansmith Mu-43 Regular

    30
    Mar 19, 2014
    There isn't. I took the video in monochrome mode for maximum detail. The sun is naturally white so it would not show up as yellow even in color, but could be easily tinted.
     
  11. OzRay

    OzRay Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 29, 2010
    South Gippsland, Australia
    Ray, not Oz
    You can get colour depending on the type of filter used and it comes out a variation of something like this (this was with pretty much an ND solar filter):

    solar2.
     
  12. Timmy

    Timmy Mu-43 Regular

    110
    Dec 3, 2013
    Wiltshire - UK
    Awesome work, very much enjoyed this - thanks for sharing.
     
  13. MajorMagee

    MajorMagee Mu-43 All-Pro

    Feb 24, 2011
    Dayton, OH
    Looks like a Y Wing Fighter from Star Wars...
     
    • Like Like x 1
  14. drd1135

    drd1135 Zen Snapshooter

    Mar 17, 2011
    Southwest Virginia
    Steve
    I know my first thought was "I bet that was easy". :rofl: I kind of like the "zipper" shot as well. Post that on the right websites and you'll start an alien invasion rumor.
     
  15. aloysius

    aloysius Mu-43 Regular

    57
    Dec 18, 2012
    Nevada City, California
    My real name is unreal
    The single-frame and zipper shots are just plain different, and each stands on its own. Very impressive! I look at the amazing detail of the ISS, showing individual sections of the solar panels, and think I'm also looking up at 6 human beings of the current crew.
     
  16. PhilS

    PhilS Mu-43 Veteran

    261
    Oct 24, 2012
    Brisbane, Australia
    Phil Savory
    Ian.. congrats on getting a fantastic shot on a very difficult task. I love the zipper shot, you did really well.
     
  17. OzRay

    OzRay Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 29, 2010
    South Gippsland, Australia
    Ray, not Oz
    I was thinking that the first shot would look pretty good as an animated GIF. That would really put things into context.
     
  18. iansmith

    iansmith Mu-43 Regular

    30
    Mar 19, 2014
    Was already working on it. :) This is real time, wasn't sure if I should slow it down to show just how fast that thing zips across. Blink and you miss it.

    hMwQjm3.
     
    • Like Like x 6
  19. OzRay

    OzRay Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 29, 2010
    South Gippsland, Australia
    Ray, not Oz
    That is fast! I think both would be good, real time to show the actual and slow-mo for effect.
     
  20. mievil

    mievil Mu-43 Regular

    190
    May 17, 2013
    San Diego
    Everything in this thread is full of WIN. Thank you!