Photographer snaps ISS as it passes over Moon

Credit: Dylan O’Donnell

Dylan O’Donnell, an Australian photographer, who has shot an array of celestial photographs has done it yet again and this time he has managed to capture the International Space Station (ISS) as it was passing over the Moon.

Dylan has been trying to get such a photo for over 12 months and it finally happened on June 30. Based on alerts he received from CalSky website about potential fly overs, the astrographer sat with his camera and a clock, with one hand on the shutter release waiting for the opportune moment.

“The ISS only passed over the moon for 0.33 seconds as it shoots by quite quickly. Knowing the second it would pass I fired a “burst” mode of exposures then crossed my fingers and hoped it would show up in review – and it did!” Dylan notes on a post on his website.

The photograph was taken using a Canon 70D attached to the rear cell of my Celestron 9.25? telescope (2300mm / f10). Dylan set the shutter speed at a quick 1/1650th of a second and ISO 800 in order to freeze the ISS in motion.

Credit: Dylan O’Donnell
Credit: Dylan O’Donnell

“I took about a second of further exposures on either side of the pass to stack the lunar surface detail using AutoStakkert2, and the increased the saturation in post to create this colour enhanced version of the moon”, Dylan notes.

For those who are not aware, the ISS completes an orbit of the Earth every 92.91 minutes and moves at 27,600 km per hour.

Dylan’s previous work has received a lot of acclaim, with one of his recent photographs of Moon taken on March 20 being honoured as the Astronomy Picture of the Day by NASA.