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Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Some things are always cool...

... no matter how used to them you think you might become.

[UPDATE visitors via google image search please see this post]

I was browsing earlier today and came across a fantastic series of images. They were taken by John Locker, an amateur astronomer and satellite communications consultant from the Wirral peninsula in the UK. If you cannot spot what it is right away it is the International Space Station. It fills me with a sense of awe when we can resolve any object in space to more than a dot of light, but to be able to image a man-made body hanging in the sky above us is breath taking.

I know very well how we can put objects up there and how they stay up there, but knowing and solving the equations is one thing; to see it drift across the sky as a matter of course is something else. Shortly before Em and I left America our friends threw a party for us. It was great afternoon capped off by a leisurely nighttime swim in the condo complex pool. I remember one of my friends pointing into the sky at a bright dot as it slowly arced across the starry heavens.
"That is the ISS, its due overhead right now"
I remember lying back in the water and watching it fall towards the far horizon. Not a memory likely to fade anytime soon.

John Locker has his own webpages including some more shots of the ISS


ebird said...

That was pretty cool! I have seen satellites at night and once I saw one in broad daylight. Maybe it was the ISS. It was in the early 1980s.

ebird said...

OK so maybe it was MIR.