- NASA astronaut and Expedition 53 Commander Randy Bresnik will spend one full orbit photographing Earth from the International Space Station and he is inviting people around the globe to share images from their Earth-side vantage point on social media.
Bresnik, with help from fellow astronaut Joe Acaba, will begin the “photo frenzy” from the station’s 360-degree Earth-facing cupola window beginning at 8:25 a.m. EDT. Traveling at about five miles per second, the station completes one orbit around Earth approximately every 90 minutes.
As part of NASA’s Year of Education on Station, an initiative to inspire more students and teachers than ever before during the 2017-18 school year, students located in areas Bresnik will photograph are especially invited to join him on the journey and share their photos, including their locations and names of their schools.
“You can’t look at the Earth and not be changed,” Bresnik said. “You realize every experience you’ve ever had and every person you’ve ever known is down on that little blue marble.”
The station’s orbit will begin with a sweep from the United Kingdom across central Europe to Oman, a pass near the Maldives, sunset west of Australia and sunrise over the south Pacific Ocean before concluding with a pass over North America from Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, to Montreal, Canada. Bresnik will be posting updates of his views on his social media accounts throughout, as satellite communications coverage allows.
Regardless of where you’ll be on Earth during their photo session, the astronauts are asking for your help to capture this moment in time, specifically from 8:25-9:55 a.m. EDT (12:25-13:55 GMT). They’re encouraging educators, students, and the public to post a picture to social media of their surroundings from their unique vantage point using the hashtag #1World1Orbit.
Astronaut photography documents how the planet changes over time, from human-caused changes like urban growth and reservoir construction, to natural dynamic events such as hurricanes, floods and volcanic eruptions. In addition to research applications, photography is a favorite pastime of the crew, and many astronauts feel compelled to share their cosmic perspective with humanity with humanity on social media.
There are opportunities for humanity to stay in touch with our representatives off the planet every day. You can track the station and sighting opportunities in your area anytime with NASA’s Spot the Station tool.
Another Earth observation from station opportunity is Sally Ride EarthKAM, which begins its next mission on Nov. 1, and allows student groups to track and analyze sections of the planet over time.