NASA Astronaut Reid Wiseman is One of the Best Space Photographer of Our Time

This is Typhoon Halong of the coast of Taiwan. Photo courtesy of Reid Wiseman/NASA

This is Typhoon Halong of the coast of Taiwan. Photo courtesy of Reid Wiseman/NASA

Reid Wiseman, an astronaut currently aboard ISS, has been a highly active photographer, showing us all images that instill a sense of calm. With a full suite of technology at his fingertips, he’s been making images of the earth at all times of day, and his night images are particularly awe-inspiring.

Before the advent of DSLRs, Twitter and every piece of technology we hold dear, it took time before we could see photographs from space. The Blue Marble, one of the 20th century’s most iconic images, wasn’t seen for a few weeks at least. Now, we have the benefit of seeing images of our planet moments after they’re taken. Astronauts aboard the International Space Station are publicly documenting their journey on Twitter, thanks in no small part to DSLRs, onboard internet, and a useful device called the NightPod.

The NightPod, Photo courtesy of the European Space Agency

The NightPod, Photo courtesy of the European Space Agency

What complicates night photography from the ISS is that the station orbits the earth at just over 4 mi/sec. That kind of speed doesn’t lend itself to slow shutter speeds. To remedy that problem, the European Space Agency developed a motorized tripod with Cosine, a Dutch measurement systems company. Dubbed NightPod, it compensates for ISS’s speed by tracking single points on the earth’s surface with data entered by the astronaut. This way, the subject is in focus, even with scarce light.

Wiseman has taken photos of city grids, natural landscapes, storms and natural phenomena. One of his most widely-shared images was of an aurora caused by geomagnetic storm that was a result of the sun’s coronal mass ejection interacting with the earth’s magnetic field. The image is beautiful as are all of the images Wiseman has taken and shared on Twitter.

Check out more images below.

Photo courtesy of Reid Wiseman/NASA

Photo courtesy of Reid Wiseman/NASA

Photo courtesy of Reid Wiseman/NASA

Las Vegas. Photo courtesy of Reid Wiseman/NASA

Photo courtesy of Reid Wiseman/NASA

Australia from low earth orbit. Photo courtesy of Reid Wiseman/NASA

Photo courtesy of Reid Wiseman/NASA

Hoover Dam. Photo courtesy of Reid Wiseman/NASA

Photo courtesy of Reid Wiseman/NASA

Waning supermoon. Photo courtesy of Reid Wiseman/NASA

Photo courtesy of Reid Wiseman/NASA

Bangkok. Photo courtesy of Reid Wiseman/NASA

Photo courtesy of Reid Wiseman/NASA

Photo courtesy of Reid Wiseman/NASA

Via IBTimes