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SLIDESHOW: NASA's Star Trail Pictures

By Robert Isenberg Jun 15, 2012

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Since the dawn of time, people have watched the stars. No matter how technological our lives become, we're still transfixed by those little pinpricks of light, just like our simian ancestors, as they continue to remind us that the universe is really, really big. But what you can't tell is that those distant plasma spheres are moving. Plus the Earth is moving. And when you photograph stars with a long exposure, the stars start to make crazy patterns across the sky. Okay, you probably knew all that. You probably have a star-streak poster on your wall. You may have even taken one such long-exposure shot of celestial swirls. Here's what's new: The International Space Station (remember that?) recently took the same kinds of photos, except from space. And when you take away the clouds, trees, light pollution and finicky tripods, outer space offers a way clearer view of the cosmos. Digital cameras can be persnickety about long exposures, so Flight Engineer Don Pettit used some shrewd camera tricks to put these pictures together. NASA was so proud of his gallery that they posted it on their Flickr page. (Which just goes to show, everybody has a Flickr page). Here are some of our favorites:
Tags: slideshows, life, stars, space, nasa

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