Man captures images of Atlantis pulling Hubble out of orbit

NASA and some very brave astronauts are currently on a mission to perform maintenance on the aging Hubble space telescope. The mission itself is to repair broken parts and add in a new camera and other new pieces to help extend the life of the telescope.

One amateur astronomer wasn't content with only reading about it online or possibly watching a live feed. He decided to take a picture of the repair mission by himself from down here on Earth.

What you see below is Atlantis as it is about to capture Hubble from orbit. These impressive and stunning photos were taken by Thierry Legault's from Florida and the backdrop in the picture is the Sun.

For those of you who want to know how the picture was taken: "the image shows the faraway scene as viewed through a Takahashi TOA-130 refractor telescope (focal length 2200mm) and a Baader solar prism, which gives the Sun its muted look. Strapped to the back of the telescope, the 5D was set to ISO 100 and a 1/8000 shutter speed, the camera's extreme low and high settings, respectively [Edit: woops, the Mk II actually does ISO 50]. Legault used the free online Celestial Observer tool to calculate the best time to shoot from his location."

A true mark of mastery and beauty not only for mankind as this orbital ballet takes place but also for the knowledge and skills that were required to capture these great photos.

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78 Comments

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Even though it is quite obvious that the comparison is not to scale, it is still quite amazing to think that we can look up at the sky (be it through powerful telescopes) and see man's presence in the cosmos.

it would be nice if he had a more powerful telescope, as it is the shuttle and Hubble are little more than specks with some shape...

ChrisJ1968 said,
and some say with all that beauty, GOD doesn't exist.


What has god to do with this? Because it's beautifull it's god? If it's awfull, it's the devil or what?

...

I think it actually indicates god doesn't exist. Religion is a primitive's way of explaining the (not yet) explainable.

*hides*

this image again is not a good visual judge of that you do not know the respective distance of the shuttle and hubble.
here is a depiction of the two docked

Remeber hubble was put into space by the shuttle so the whole thing fits inside the shuttle bay


Not so much the size of the Sun, but the size difference between the hubble and the space shuttle is what impressed me. For some reason I had pictured the hubble bigger.

Anybody know the "free Celestial Observer tool" he used to time out when he could see the shuttle?

I'm interested in knowing.

Edit: Nevermind, a link to it was on his website.

Im just want to confirm, because without solar spot, flares and so on many other artifact, this photo is absurdly fake.

Reading is your friend... ;)

For those of you who want to know how the picture was taken: "the image shows the faraway scene as viewed through a Takahashi TOA-130 refractor telescope (focal length 2200mm) and a Baader solar prism, which gives the Sun its muted look.

"What you see below is Atlantis as it is about to capture Hubble from orbit. These impressive and stunning photos were taken by Thierry Legault's from Florida and the backdrop in the picture is the Sun."

Please read the article again before posting....

dennis_mendonca said,
"What you see below is Atlantis as it is about to capture Hubble from orbit. These impressive and stunning photos were taken by Thierry Legault's from Florida and the backdrop in the picture is the Sun."

Please read the article again before posting....

Im just want to confirm, because without solar spot, flares and so on many other artifact, this photo is absurdly fake.

Currently, you can't take a common photo to the sun, instead scientist take a photo using a different light (and ray) spectrum at the cost of missing details

Example:

Magallanes said,


Im just want to confirm, because without solar spot, flares and so on many other artifact, this photo is absurdly fake.

Currently, you can't take a common photo to the sun, instead scientist take a photo using a different light (and ray) spectrum at the cost of missing details

Example:



again reading is your friend, from the article "For those of you who want to know how the picture was taken: "the image shows the faraway scene as viewed through a Takahashi TOA-130 refractor telescope (focal length 2200mm) and a Baader solar prism, which gives the Sun its muted look.
"

Cpugeni Ω said,
Amazing shot - focal length of 2200mm, ummm, thats some serious kit!

or a 1000mm lens with a 2x teleconverter...but for this kinda stuff, a telescope is better.

Pretty awesome pictures. The guy had to be at the right place at the right time. I wonder where he is located at? The Hubble is on an Orbit above the Equator.

Dane said,
Pretty awesome pictures. The guy had to be at the right place at the right time. I wonder where he is located at? The Hubble is on an Orbit above the Equator.

The article says Florida.

neoraptor said,
cool, these shots give a nice idea about the size of the sun (relevant to the ship)

kinda sorta but not really, gotta remeber that the shuttle is much much closer to us than the sun making it ( the shuttle) appear larger as compared to the sun than it really is

neoraptor said,
cool, these shots give a nice idea about the size of the sun (relevant to the ship)

Not really, because the ship is far more closer to the Earth than it is to the Sun. The Sun is much, much larger than it really looks from these photos.

Obviously not true, because the shuttle is much much closer to earth than it is to the sun. so it doesn't show the right scale!

Minimoose said,
I like it how multiple people felt the need to correct him, saying the exact thing as the first person to correct him ;)

Of course. But one must really stress just how unimaginably larger the sun is than anything you can imagine. Tens of thousands, if not millions of times larger than you might get the impression of from this image.

Which is certainly saying something, when this image already makes the shuttle look insignificant.


why are correcting him? because that doesnt give you an accurate idea of the relative size of the sun and the ship. the sun is much, much, much, much, much, much, much, much , much larger. you could put 333000 earths inside the sun. and in the picture you can actually SEE the ship.

I think it does show just how big the sun is as long as you take into account that the sun is about 93 million miles farther away than the shuttle.

The problem is when you try to explain how big the sun is in terms of the earth is that that people have a hard time grasping just how big the earth is. The size of the shuttle is something someone can grasp.

Julius Caro said,
why are correcting him? because that doesnt give you an accurate idea of the relative size of the sun and the ship. the sun is much, much, much, much, much, much, much, much , much larger. you could put 333000 earths inside the sun. and in the picture you can actually SEE the ship.

Since when does "a nice idea" mean "an accurate statement"?

How about you people learn to read and comprehend before you gang up on somebody to correct them on their mere idea.

neoraptor said,
cool, these shots give a nice idea about the size of the sun (relevant to the ship)

Yes, the size is alright here, if you assume the shuttle is about as large as the entire Earth.

Yeah, a shuttle-solar transit?? At first I didn't believe it (I'm an astronomer) But yeah it looks like he pulled it off.

The source says that the transit lasted for 0.8 seconds only!