Stunning Image of ISS Taken From the Ground Shows two Spacewalking Astronauts - Beyond The World
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Stunning Image of ISS Taken From the Ground Shows two Spacewalking Astronauts

We’ve become accustomed to seeing images of astronauts inside the International Space Station as they float in zero gravity and tend to their science projects. We’re even becoming used to seeing photographs of astronauts on spacewalks. However, this is a novel situation.

A view from the ground of two astronauts performing a spacewalk.

Sebastian Voltmer is an award-winning German photographer whose work has appeared in “Sky and Telescope” and countless other magazines. His astrophotography has been displayed at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC, the Carl Zeiss Planetarium in Stuttgart, and numerous other venues.

Voltmer captured the photograph on March 23rd. It depicts American astronaut Raja Chari and German astronaut Matthias Maurer performing a six-hour spacewalk to install a camera as well as perform maintenance and upgrades.

“It’s probably the first ground-based picture showing two spacewalkers on the ISS at the same time.” Sebastian Voltmer, Astrophotographer Extraordinaire.

“This image of the ISS pass was taken on March 23, 2022, under good seeing conditions through my C11 EdgeHD telescope from the hometown of ESA astronaut Dr. Matthias Maurer,” Voltmer said at Spaceweather.com. “I feel like I just made a once in a lifetime image 🙂 It’s probably the first ground-based picture showing two spacewalkers on the ISS at the same time.”

Voltmer added that after capturing the shot, he instantly shared it with German media, which included Matthias Maurer, and it quickly went viral. Voltmer worked on the image further to highlight both astronauts. Another well-known photographer, Philip Smith, contacted Voltmer to inform him that he had created an image that also featured Raja Chari, sitting on the Canadarm 2 robotic arm.

Voltmer’s photograph is the first from the ground showing two ISS astronauts spacewalking. However, Ralph Vandebergh, an amateur photographer, acquired photographs of American astronaut Steve Bowen during a spacewalk in 2011. Vandebergh was also aboard the Canadarm 2 in that photograph. 

Astronaut Stephen Bowen (inside the yellow box) was captured in this image during the March 2, 2011, spacewalk for STS-133. Credit: Ralf Vandebergh

Voltmer is a talented and diligent astrophotographer whose work has received widespread recognition. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram to see some of his stunning work.

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Connie Scotti
Connie Scotti
9 months ago

It is ” mind blowing ” to me to continually see the advancement made over the years since man learned to leave the ground in an airplane. To be able to take this picture to begin with and to think that mankind has learned to leave Planet Earth to explore other planets? What hath God wrought?

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