30 Mind-Bending Photographs Taken in Space

Taking photographs in space must be a fascinating experience. Not just because you get to see the world from a different point of view, but because, well, you are in space.

Astronauts and Cosmonauts onboard the International Space Station have the privilege to see Earth from a lace only a few have been.

As they travel around the Earth, they witness the beauties our planet has to offer.

Seen here is Astronaut Stephen Robinson on the Canadarm2, the robotic arm connected to the ISS. Image Credit: WikiImages / Pixabay.

We look up towards the stars, the moon, and sometimes catch a glimpse of the ISS passing above our head, while they look down to Earth, and see how small we actually are.

And as a reminder of our place in the universe, astronauts on board the ISS have snapped stunning images throughout the years.

A Space Selfie taken by Japanese Astronaut Aki Hoshide. Image Credit: NASA.
A Space Selfie taken by Japanese Astronaut Aki Hoshide. Image Credit: NASA.

One of the most fascinating ones I’ve personally seen is the long-exposure photographs snapped on board the ISS by astronaut Don Petit.

While on board the International Space Station in 2012 the NASA astronaut snapped stunning long-exposure images of star trails.

Speaking about the technique he used, Don Petit explained:

“My star trail images are made by taking a time exposure of about 10 to 15 minutes. However, with modern digital cameras, 30 seconds is about the longest exposure possible, due to electronic detector noise effectively snowing out the image. To achieve the longer exposures I do what many amateur astronomers do. I take multiple 30-second exposures, then ‘stack’ them using imaging software, thus producing the longer exposure.”

A long-exposure photographs snapped by Astronaut Don Petit while orbiting Earth on board the ISS.
A long-exposure photograph snapped by Astronaut Don Petit while orbiting Earth on board the ISS.
This image was snapped by Astronaut Don Pettit. Image Credit: NASA.
This image was snapped by Astronaut Don Pettit. Image Credit: NASA.
Another stunning photograph taken from space. This masterpiece was snapped by astronaut Kjell Lindgren. Image Credit: NASA.
Another stunning photograph taken in space. This masterpiece was snapped by astronaut Kjell Lindgren. Image Credit: NASA.
An astronaut aboard the International Space Station captured this photograph of circular farming patterns in Sharq El Owainat in southwest Egypt. The remote agricultural outpost in the Sahara Desert lies approximately 290 kilometers (180 miles) from the nearest city and 210 kilometers (130 miles) from the Toshka lakes. Image Credit: NASA.
An astronaut aboard the International Space Station captured this photograph of circular farming patterns in Sharq El Owainat in southwest Egypt. The remote agricultural outpost in the Sahara Desert lies approximately 290 kilometers (180 miles) from the nearest city and 210 kilometers (130 miles) from the Toshka lakes. Image Credit: NASA.

 

The International Space Station is featured in this image photographed by an STS-132 crew member on board the Space Shuttle Atlantis after the station and shuttle began their post-undocking relative separation. Undocking of the two spacecraft occurred at 10:22 CDT on 23 May 2010, ending a seven-day stay that saw the addition of a new station module, Rassvet, replacement of batteries and resupply of the orbiting outpost. Image Credit: NASA / Wikimedia Commons.
The International Space Station is featured in this image photographed by an STS-132 crew member on board the Space Shuttle Atlantis after the station and shuttle began their post-undocking relative separation. Undocking of the two spacecraft occurred at 10:22 CDT on 23 May 2010, ending a seven-day stay that saw the addition of a new station module, Rassvet, replacement of batteries and resupply of the orbiting outpost. Image Credit: NASA / Wikimedia Commons.

 

Another photographs taken in space shows solar evaporation ponds outside the city of Moab, Utah. There are 23 colorful ponds spread across 400 acres. Image Credit: NASA.
Another photograph taken in space shows solar evaporation ponds outside the city of Moab, Utah. There are 23 colorful ponds spread across 400 acres. Image Credit: NASA.

Another stunning photograph that was taken by astronauts onboard the ISS shows ‘minimalist snow art’ in Russia. Astronaut Thomas Pesquet couldn’t explain the kilometer-long parallel lines clearly visible from space. And while Aliens may have been an answer many people were looking for, the truth is that the oddly shaped lines are part of a major shelterbelt—also known as a windbreak—crossing the steppes of southern Russia near the Volga River (Volgograd Oblast).

Minimalist snow art in Russia. Image Credit: NASA.
Minimalist snow art in Russia. Image Credit: NASA.
An astronaut aboard the International Space Station observed this distinctive checkerboard pattern alongside the Priest River in northern Idaho. Image Credit: NASA.
An astronaut aboard the International Space Station observed this distinctive checkerboard pattern alongside the Priest River in northern Idaho. Image Credit: NASA.
This image, photographed in space shows France, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands and Belgium. Image Credit: NASA.
This image, photographed in space, shows France, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, and Belgium. Image Credit NASA.
This photograph was taken as the International Space Station was flying some 400 kilometers above Canada. It shows the phenomena known as Aurora Borealis. Image Credit: NASA.
This photograph was taken as the International Space Station was flying some 400 kilometers above Canada. It shows the phenomena known as Aurora Borealis. Image Credit: NASA.
Space Shuttle Atlantis seen orbiting Earth high above the Andes Mountains. Image Credit: NASA.
Space Shuttle Atlantis seen orbiting Earth high above the Andes Mountains. Image Credit: NASA.
This image was taken by Astronaut Alexander Gerst, on board the ISS. Image Credit: NASA.
This image was taken by Astronaut Alexander Gerst, on board the ISS. Image Credit: NASA.
"The famous and gigantic Perito Moreno glacier in Argentina. We can see glaciers thinning and retracting all over the world," wrote Alexander Gerst on Twitter after publishing the photographs he took while orbiting Earth high above Argentina. Image Credit: NASA.
“The famous and gigantic Perito Moreno glacier in Argentina. We can see glaciers thinning and retracting all over the world,” wrote Alexander Gerst on Twitter after publishing the photographs he took while orbiting Earth high above Argentina. Image Credit: NASA.
The launch of Soyuz MS-11 as seen from the International Space Station. Image Credit: NASA.
The launch of Soyuz MS-11 as seen from the International Space Station. Image Credit: NASA.
Here's a part of Antarctica as seen from the International Space Station. Image Credit: NASA.
Here’s a part of Antarctica as seen from the International Space Station. Image Credit: NASA.
A view of Category 5 Super Typhoon Trami from space. Image Credit: NASA.
A view of Category 5 Super Typhoon Trami from space. Image Credit: NASA.
Category 5 Super Typhoon Trami photographed by Alexander Gerst onboard the International Space Station. Image Credit: NASA.
Category 5 Super Typhoon Trami photographed by Alexander Gerst onboard the International Space Station. Image Credit: NASA.
This is not Mars. A photograph snapped by astronauts on board the ISS shows us the desert of Mauritania where we can see a "small" reminder of our cosmic environment, as explained by German Astronaut Alexander Gerst.
This is not Mars. A photograph snapped by astronauts on board the ISS shows us the desert of Mauritania where we can see a “small” reminder of our cosmic environment, as explained by German Astronaut Alexander Gerst. Image Credit: NASA.
This amazing photograph taken by astronauts on board the International Space Stations shows the Bahamas and another barely visible, yet equally stunning feature, an airplane flying hundreds of kilometers beneath the ISS. Image Credit: NASA.
This amazing photograph taken by astronauts on board the International Space Stations shows the Bahamas and another barely visible, yet equally stunning feature, an airplane flying hundreds of kilometers beneath the ISS (The airplane is located in the upper right corner of the photograph). Image Credit: NASA.
The location of the airplane photographed by astronauts on board the ISS, as the space station was orbiting Earth. Image Credit: NASA.
The location of the airplane photographed by astronauts on board the ISS, as the space station was orbiting Earth. Image Credit: NASA.
This photograph shows a South African Desert, as seen from the International Space Station. Image Credit: NASA.
This photograph shows a South African Desert, as seen from the International Space Station. Image Credit: NASA.
A mind-bending image snapped by Alexander Gerst from space. "Ring of Fire. The Kuril volcano island chain marks the northern border of the Pacific Plate, where one plate dives under the other, melting up and generating volcanoes above. Plate tectonics visible with the naked eye." Image Credit: NASA.
A mind-bending image snapped by Alexander Gerst from space. “Ring of Fire. The Kuril volcano island chain marks the northern border of the Pacific Plate, where one plate dives under the other, melting up and generating volcanoes above. Plate tectonics visible with the naked eye.” Image Credit: NASA.
Another amazing photograph taken by astronauts on board the ISS. This image shows radiating street pattern of Tunisia's second city, Sfax. Image Credit: NASA.
Another amazing photograph taken by astronauts on board the ISS. This image shows the radiating street pattern of Tunisia’s second city, Sfax. Image Credit: NASA.
The shadow of the Moon passes above Earth during the total eclipse on August 21, 2017. This is a view from the International Space Station. Image Credit NASA.
The shadow of the Moon passes above Earth during the total eclipse on August 21, 2017. This is a view from the International Space Station. Image Credit NASA.
Backdropped by a blue and white part of Earth, space shuttle Discovery is photographed by an Expedition 26 crew member as the shuttle approaches the International Space Station during STS-133 rendezvous and docking operations. Image Credit: NASA.
Backdropped by a blue and white part of Earth, space shuttle Discovery is photographed by an Expedition 26 crew member as the shuttle approaches the International Space Station during STS-133 rendezvous and docking operations. Image Credit: NASA.
The Himalaya range, near the China–India border where peaks cast strong evening shadows on the snow. Image Credit: NASA.
The Himalaya range, near the China–India border where peaks cast strong evening shadows on the snow. Image Credit: NASA.
Distant view of Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) Kounotori 5 H-II Transfer Vehicle (HTV-5) during its final approach for docking with the International Space Station (ISS) with darkness of space in the background. Image Credit: NASA.
Distant view of Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) Kounotori 5 H-II Transfer Vehicle (HTV-5) during its final approach for docking with the International Space Station (ISS) with the darkness of space in the background. Image Credit: NASA.
This is one of a series of night time images photographed by one of the Expedition 29 crew members from the International Space Station. It features Aurora Australis, seen from a point over the southeast Tasman Sea near southern New Zealand. Image Credit: NASA.
This is one of a series of night time images photographed by one of the Expedition 29 crew members from the International Space Station. It features Aurora Australis, seen from a point over the southeast Tasman Sea near southern New Zealand. Image Credit: NASA.

 

 

 

 

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