After scorching over 18,000 acres and burning down 346 homes, the Waldo Canyon fire near and around Colorado Springs, CO has left scars that are both literal and metaphorical in nature. And while it would be impossible to capture an image of the metaphorical scarring left by the most destructive fire in Colorado history, NASA’s Terra Satellite was able to get this false color image (which includes both visible and infrared light) showing the very literal scar the fire left in its wake.
Everything that’s bright red is unburned forest, white and gray parts are roads and developed areas, light-brown areas are slightly burned, and dark-brown areas are severely burned. You can see the full-sized image over on NASA’s Goddard Photo and Video Flickr stream.
McLean Fahnestock of Long Beach, CA took high definition video of all 135 Space Shuttle launches and synchronized them into this mesmerizing video titled “Grand Finale”. It’s a beautiful project with a twinge of sadness.
Mars rover Opportunity has spent more than 8 years on the Red Planet exploring, analyzing and, like any good tourist, snapping photos. And one of the most recent and stunning photos from the six-wheeled explorer is the panorama you see above.
It’s a panorama of an area called “Greeley Haven,” and it was put together using 817 images taken between December 21st, 2011 and May 8th, 2012. The picture is being called “the next best thing to being there,” so if you’re not planning a trip to Mars anytime soon, be sure to check out a larger version of the image here (photo number 9).
Massive wildfires in the Rockies have destroyed hundreds of homes and scorched tens of thousands of acres over the past week. To get an idea of how massive these fires are, check out this photograph captured by a NASA satellite.
The GOES-15 satellite keeps a stationary eye over the western U.S. and the smoke from the fires raging in many of the states have created a brownish-colored blanket over the region. The dawn’s early light revealed smoke and haze throughout the Midwest, arising from forest fires throughout the Rockies. While the most publicized fires occur along the populous eastern range in Colorado, the great smoke plumes in this image came from Wyoming.
Ever wonder what camera gear NASA astronaut Don Pettit uses to shoot his amazing photographs from the International Space Station? Here’s a portrait of Don floating around on with his massive collection of Nikon DSLRs and lenses. How much of the gear can you identify?
We’ve seen ‘Blue Marble’ photos of Earth before, but this latest NASA photo is different: it’s the first photo of its kind shot from above our planet’s North Pole. The photo is a composite of images captured by a satellite as it passed over the North Pole 15 times at an altitude of 512 miles.
In a couple of short days, Don Pettit intends to do something that has never been done before: photograph the transit of Venus from space. The transit of Venus, a phenomenon where Venus appears as a small black dot crossing the plane of the sun, is a rare event that happens in pairs 8 years apart. The first of the current pair happen in 2004, and after June 5th we won’t be seeing Venus cross the sun again until the year 2117.
Pettit — who is preparing to shoot the event with his trusty Nikon D2Xs rig complete with 1200mm lens and white light solar filter — is a well-known astronaut/photographer and one whose work we’ve featured many times before on PetaPixel. So given the uniqueness of his upcoming photo op and the expertise of the photographer in question, we’re very interested in seeing the results. Be sure to check out the video for more info.
More than most government agencies, NASA is actually pretty enthusiastic about photography (by comparison, we probably won’t be seeing CIA photography archives come to light any time soon). When NASA had a problem that needed solving they liked to look towards their cameras, and that’s exactly what they did when they needed to test and record the abilities of their space suits. Read more…
It might not be very applicable to the vast majority of photographers, but NASA astronaut Captain Alan Pointdexter has written up a fascinating article over on Luminous Landscape in which he shares advice about doing photography in space. Taking photos on the ground is one thing, but imagine using not just the sun, but the earth itself as a source of light. Read more…