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International Space Station Flying Past The Moon Captured In Stunning Detail

03/07/2015 13:24 BST | Updated 03/07/2015 13:59 BST

international space station

No matter how hard you squint, spotting the International Space Station whizzing across the sky at 0.6 miles per hour is quite a hard task.

Unless you are amateur photographer Dylan O’Donnell who recorded the moment with an absolutely beautiful image depicting the ISS as a tiny black dot against the grandeur of the moon.

Writing on his blog, O'Donnell described the painstaking preparation that went into this glorious picture.

Using a DSLR and telescope, he had to carefully time his photography to fit the 33-second gap -- the time he says it takes for the ISS to fly past the moon.

international space station

NASA has a detailed list of when and where you can spot the ISS from but capturing the image is a rigorous test of patience.

O'Donnell writes:

"I was super happy to catch the silhouette of the ISS over the disc of the moon last night!

"The CalSky website sends me alerts for potential fly overs for which I’ve been waiting a long time – about 12 months. I got one this week and this was adjusted by 15 seconds by the time of the “occultation.

"If you think that it might be a case of sitting there with your camera and a clock, with one hand on the shutter release, you’d be absolutely correct!

"The ISS only passed over the moon for 0.33 seconds as it shoots by quite quickly. Knowing the second it would pass I fired a “burst” mode of exposures then crossed my fingers and hoped it would show up in review – and it did!"

If you would like to get your own photo of the ISS, here's how O'Donnell did it:

  • A Canon 70D attached to the rear cell of a Celestron 9.25″ telescope (2300mm / f10).
  • The shutter speed was a quick 1/1650th of a second and ISO 800 in order to freeze the ISS in motion.

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