We are working on some very exciting new developments for Keys at the Kennedy Space Center at Cape Canaveral. This morning we had the opportunity to get up close and personal at the SpaceX Falcon 9 launch. At 4:55am, this is the picture I got.
For my photo friends, this was a 4 minute time exposure using a Nikon D800E using at Nikkor 28-300mm at f7.1 at ISO 640. The image was denoised and cropped. I set the exposure to achieve a good clean image of the water and stars and let the rocket burn-in the trace image.
From a personal perspective this is not our first launch. Our interest goes back to Apollo and recently we were invited to see the Orion launch (our namesake) in December. This launch was quite different because we were close enough to see, hear and feel the launch from first ignition. Nighttime launches are amazing and this one was a clear cool morning with perfect flight and photography conditions.
Just amazing what science and technology can do. Even more amazing is to be a part of the commercial enterprise called SpaceX. Thanks Elon Musk!