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Video: Incredible images of a rocket taking off captured from ISS

Credits : YouTube screenshot / European Space Agency, ESA

The astronaut Alexander Gerst captured some incredible images of the Soyouz rocket as it takes off from Earth to eventually join the International Space Station. This usual perspective is quite extraordinary. 

We are used to seeing rockets taking off from the Earth’s surface.  These images are impressive, as it takes a lot of power to launch a rocket into space.  However, observing a rocket leaving Earth from space seems even more incredible.  Alexander Gerst (ESA) captured images of the rocket while on board the ISS. In the images we can see the Russian rocket, Soyouz being launched into space on the 16th November 2018 as it set off from Baïkonour, in Kazakhstan so that it can join up with the ISS.

An extraordinary perspective

So that you can get a few things into perspective, ISS revolves about 400 km above the Earth’s surface, while moving at a speed of about 28, 000 km per hour.  The rocket can be seen once the station has passed it.  The capsule finally manages to rejoin the ISS two days later.  Alexander Gerst filmed the scene from inside the Cupola module, a sort of panoramic observation dome which allows astronauts on board to appreciate the outside environment.

Remember that this video is a time-lapse sequence.  The images are accelerated 16 times (about 15 minutes compressed into only 1 minute).  At about 19 seconds you can see the separation of the propeller.  Then around 37 seconds the propeller will fall back down again along with it’s feul so that it eventually starts to burn as it re-enters into the atmosphere.

The ISS will soon retire

We should remember that the International Space Station is the only operational station in orbit.  However it won’t be for much longer as it will soon retire from it’s duties.  China unveiled however in November it’s future space station during the Aeronautical and aerospace show at Zhuhai.  This space station should be the ISS’s successor in 2022.

Measuring 17 metres long and weighing 54 tonnes, the main module or living quarters will be able to house up to 3 astronauts.  The station will be accessible to other space agencies who are wanting to carry out scientific experiment on board as well.

And what about the moon?

NASA released an extremely high definition video of our natural satellite, the Moon in November 2018.  These incredible images come from shots taken from the American probe the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter which was launched in 2009.


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