RE: Awesome ISS photos!!!

From: Ulrich Beinert (
Date: Sat Jun 09 2001 - 16:30:54 PDT

  • Next message: dale: "Re: Awesome ISS photos!!!"

    This is very similar to the technique I use to image the ISS with my 90mm
    telescopes (see the images on in "CCD Imaging"). I've even
    managed to get a detailed shot of Mir with a HANDHELD scope! The most
    important part is that the exposure is short enough to freeze the station
    rushing through the field of view. Meanwhile, my tracking is good enough to
    show the station on 5-10% of all frames of the video!
    > -----Original Message-----
    > From: Tom Wagner []
    > Sent: Saturday, June 09, 2001 8:29 PM
    > To: SeeSat
    > Subject: Awesome ISS photos!!!
    > This post is for anyone interested in learning how one person
    > recently shot
    > spectacular images of the orbiting ISS.
    > The technique is used by Dave Cash and is featured at
    > I just obtained more detailed information via a personal e-mail and am
    > sharing it here.
    > [Dave taped a wooden stick to his scope to aid his manual  tracking. The
    > webcam that he uses blocks his view of what he is shooting so he simply
    > lines the ISS up in the cross hairs of a finder and hopes he gets it!]
    > Dave replied........"To answer your questions:
    > The wooden stick was an improvisation "in the field" to try to
    > get better and finer control over the pointing of the scope. The stick is
    > about 2 or 3 foot long and is taped to the front and back of the
    > scope tube
    > above the declination bearing. About 1 foot or so projects back behind the
    > mirror cell to act as a kind of lever.  I was quite surprised at
    > how well it
    > seemed to work.
    > What you do is make sure that the scope and finder are well aligned. You
    > need to make sure that when a bright star is centered on the finder cross
    > hairs that it's image is centered in the PC webcam preview
    > window.  Once the
    > ISS is sighted with the naked eye, start the webcam recording and then try
    > to keep it's image centered on the finder cross hairs by using
    > the lever to
    > track it.  Most of the time the ISS never makes it into the field of view
    > but if you are lucky you may bet a few good frames that show it
    > !!!  I tend
    > to get about 1000 frames in my AVI's but only about 20 frames
    > show the ISS,
    > and of those only a few are sharp enough to show details.  Still
    > it's worth
    > trying.
    > If you need any more information then please let me know
    > Best wishes
    > Dave"
    > Tom Wagner
    > USA
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