Space

NASA photographer's camera meets fiery demise during rocket launch

NASA photographer's camera mee...
Camera melted by the launch of a SpaceX Falcon 9 launch on Tuesday
Camera melted by the launch of a SpaceX Falcon 9 launch on Tuesday
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By virtue of being stationed in locations that aren't safe for humans, remote cameras regularly capture incredible images of rocket launches
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By virtue of being stationed in locations that aren't safe for humans, remote cameras regularly capture incredible images of rocket launches
SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifts off on Tuesday
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SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifts off on Tuesday
SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifts off on Tuesday
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SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifts off on Tuesday
Tuesday’s launch saw a set of five communications satellites lifted into space, along with the GRACE Follow-On spacecraft
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Tuesday’s launch saw a set of five communications satellites lifted into space, along with the GRACE Follow-On spacecraft
SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifts off on Tuesday
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SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifts off on Tuesday
By virtue of being stationed in locations that aren't safe for humans, remote cameras regularly capture incredible images of rocket launches
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By virtue of being stationed in locations that aren't safe for humans, remote cameras regularly capture incredible images of rocket launches
By virtue of being stationed in locations that aren't safe for humans, remote cameras regularly capture incredible images of rocket launches
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By virtue of being stationed in locations that aren't safe for humans, remote cameras regularly capture incredible images of rocket launches
SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket ahead of launch on Tuesday
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SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket ahead of launch on Tuesday
Tuesday’s launch saw a set of five communications satellites lifted into space, along with the GRACE Follow-On spacecraft
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Tuesday’s launch saw a set of five communications satellites lifted into space, along with the GRACE Follow-On spacecraft
By virtue of being stationed in locations that aren't safe for humans, remote cameras regularly capture incredible images of rocket launches
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By virtue of being stationed in locations that aren't safe for humans, remote cameras regularly capture incredible images of rocket launches
SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket ahead of launch on Tuesday
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SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket ahead of launch on Tuesday
Long exposure shot of the GRACE Follow-On mission lifting off on Tuesday
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Long exposure shot of the GRACE Follow-On mission lifting off on Tuesday
The GRACE Follow-On mission lifts off on Tuesday
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The GRACE Follow-On mission lifts off on Tuesday
Camera melted by the launch of a SpaceX Falcon 9 launch on Tuesday
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Camera melted by the launch of a SpaceX Falcon 9 launch on Tuesday
An image from the dying moments of Bill Ingall's camera during a rocket launch on Tuesday
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An image from the dying moments of Bill Ingall's camera during a rocket launch on Tuesday
An image from the dying moments of Bill Ingall's camera during a rocket launch on Tuesday
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An image from the dying moments of Bill Ingall's camera during a rocket launch on Tuesday
View gallery - 16 images

Photographing rocket launches involves some pretty fine margins – too far away and you'll miss out on some spectacular snaps, too close and you might just get burned. NASA photographer Bill Ingalls has experienced this firsthand, losing a valuable piece of kit during the launch of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket on Tuesday.

By virtue of being stationed in locations that aren't safe for humans, remote cameras regularly capture incredible images of rocket launches. What's surprising about this particular mishap is that the deceased camera wasn't even the closest of Ingall's to the pad.

An image from the dying moments of Bill Ingall's camera during a rocket launch on Tuesday
An image from the dying moments of Bill Ingall's camera during a rocket launch on Tuesday

"I had many other cameras much closer to the pad than this and all are safe," he wrote on Facebook. "This was result of a small brush fire, which is not unheard of from launches, and was extinguished by fireman, albeit, after my cam was baked."

Ingalls did manage to retrieve the memory card from his destroyed Canon 5D (worth US$3,500 for the body only in case you were wondering), which kept snapping up until its fiery demise.

An image from the dying moments of Bill Ingall's camera during a rocket launch on Tuesday
An image from the dying moments of Bill Ingall's camera during a rocket launch on Tuesday

Tuesday's launch saw a set of five communications satellites lifted into space, along with the GRACE Follow-On spacecraft. That mission is a joint effort by NASA and the German Research Center for Geosciences to track the redistribution of mass throughout the Earth's atmosphere, oceans, land and ice sheets.

You can check out all of Ingall's snaps from the launch in the gallery.

Source: Bill Ingalls/Facebook

View gallery - 16 images
2 comments
b@man
We have had anti-gravity 80 years at least... but we still like our fireworks:)
ioff101der
So, does Cannon use glass lenses?