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George Preoteasa
Wurtsboro, NY, USA
02/05/2022
06:40 pm

Equipment Details:

Sony a7iii with Rokinon 12mm lens

Post-processing Details:

This is the result of a timelapse. Shots were processed in Lightroom and stacked using StarStaX

Image Details:

The ISS and Tiengong seen at the same time. The lower horizontal path is that of the ISS. The path that goes through the moon (the bright oval in the middle) is the Tiengong station.

See the timelapse movie here: https://vimeo.com/674204532

Tiengong is the Chinese space station and I had the opportunity to see it and the ISS at the same time. Moreover, Tiengong crossed in front of the moon.

I was looking for an occasion to photograph a Tiengong lunar transit and as I was looking up weather related information. I noticed that there was an ISS pass at about the same time (though not a lunar transit). The ISS visibility was from 18:34:31 to 18:41:36. The Tiengong lunar transit was at 18:40:22, thus during that interval.

I drove to the Basha Kill Wildlife Management Area in Wurtsboro, NY, which was on the path where one could see the lunar transit, and set up first for a wide angle timelapse at 12mm focal length. Then used another camera with a telephoto at 500mm ready to press the shutter, camera set at high speed continuous shooting. The transit duration was going to be only 0.69 seconds.

I watched the yellow bright ISS majestically pass below the moon moving from right to left. It was approaching the horizon when I spotted Tiengong entering my field of view also from the right. It was headed towards the moon, as expected. I pressed the shutter seconds before the transit. A few more minutes and the show was over. Tiengong exited and I started packing, curious how the pictures came out and looking forward to dinner.

The temperature was about 20F and there was no wind. Perfect conditions.