These photos are literally from another world.
NASA Astronaut Don Pettit is a flight engineer making sure everything runs smoothly up there on the International Space Station. In the limited spare time he had, he took the opportunity to take this frankly phenomenal photographs high above the Earth’s atmosphere.
“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.”
You can experience more of his magical images via the International Space Station’s Flickr account.