Scope Diagram Astrocamera.Net - Astrophotography by Dave Kodama

Experiment: Airplane Astrophotography


Astrophoto from Virgin Atlantic Flight VS008 -- The Milky Way is faintly visible running through Cassiopeia, with the lights of some Canadian cities below. We were on a night flight from Los Angeles to London at the start of a trip to see London and the Northern Lights from Sweden.

This is not a good picture technically, but Ijust had to try the experiment of taking an astrophoto from a moving airplane. With today's cameras it's barely possible. I had to take this camera to its extreme end to get a shot. My hope was to also capture some aurora in the distance, but I never did see anything that I could positively say was auroral glow.

Some of the technical difficulties: Window condensation and scratches, reflections from internal aircraft lights, external aircraft lights, turbulence, and of course, clouds.

Image info: 8 Dec. 2012 / Nikon D600 / ISO 25,600 / Sigma 15mm f/2.8 / 1.3 sec.
Processing: Adobe Lightroom