The International Space Station was captured on camera in a super-rare photo – as its astronauts prepared for a SPACE WALK.
The spacecraft was illuminated for a fraction of a second as it transitted right over the moon in the early hours of Monday morning.
And astrophotographer Andrew McCarthy was amazed to see that the whole structure of the ISS had reoriented as those inside prepared for a space walk outside the station.
The solar ‘panels’ – or arrays – that usually lie flat at each side of the ISS were seen shifting at different angles as the astronauts prepared to exit the spacecraft, whilst live-streaming to NASA.
Photographer Andrew, from California, USA, had less than a second to capture the ISS in transit across the moon 400km above earth.
But he managed to photograph the ISS grazing across the Copernicus crater before it disappeared from view.
Andrew said: “This instantly became one of my favourite captures.
“This is due to the novelty of capturing a spacecraft from Earth, but especially since I could clearly see the reconfiguration of the solar array due to a mission that was being live streamed from NASA.
“This is one of the rare times where you can observe changes in the structure due to a mission easily from Earth.
“In this image, you can see how the solar array has been reoriented so the crew of the ISS can install new hardware.”
The photo was captured on a roadside in Sacramento, California.
Andrew said: “I had to choose the location carefully to be sure I could capture the ISS following a path through the middle of the moon.
“But I didn’t expect to get this cool, rare shot of a mission happening over our heads.
“And to top it off, in the photo the ISS happens to be grazing my favourite lunar crater, Copernicus. What a world.”
To see more of Andrew’s amazing astrophotography, visit his Instagram page @cosmic_background, or go to https://www.patreon.com/ajamesmccarthy.
This Article firstly Publish on uk.news.yahoo.com