Last Updated: 17-MAR-2016


Misc Astro Photos


Minotaur V Rocket Launch - Sep 06, 2013 Viewed from Glen Rock, PA

NASA Wallops (south of Ocean City in VA) launched a Minotaur V which is a five-stage version based on the Minotaur IV+. It has an additional upper stage for small GTO, lunar, and interplanetary missions. NASA's Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) Mission was launched on the first Minotaur V, from the Wallops Island, Virginia launch site at 03:27 UTC on September 7, 2013. The Minotaur launched the LADEE spacecraft into a highly elliptic orbit where it can phase and time its trajectory burn to the moon

The launch was right on time.

It was very impressive being that it was over 150 miles SE of here. In fact it looked to be only a few miles away.

Again, why fight the crowds as I could see this from my porch !

All photos are 15 second exposures.

The glow is from Baltimore 34 miles away (Yuck !)

Less than 10 seconds after the launch we could see it here and we could even see it jettison the first, second & third stage

Because of the curvature of the earth it appears to be going down

On the other side of the tree now

Three minutes and its gone

Smoke remains

Excellent night for looking at the stars.


Minotaur 1 rocket launch - Jun 29, 2011 Viewed from Glen Rock, PA

NASA Wallops (south of Ocean City in VA) launched a U.S. Air Force Minotaur 1 rocket carrying the Department of Defense Operationally Responsive Space office's ORS-1 satellite into Orbit. (Classified payload)

The rocket is a retired Minuteman ICBM. So, what you would see with one of these going up would not have been good 20 years ago ! These are not small and we will have to go down to see one go up as they have been launching these every month of so due to us being in so many wars at once.

The launch was supposed to go at 8:30 PM but it got delayed. So, in the end it went up at 11:09pm I knew I would be able to see it as its only 155 miles or so SE from here.

All photos are 15 second exposures.

Not bad entertainment considering this was from my side porch !

Nothing yet. You can see some of the Milky Way trending from lower center to upper left. The glow is from Baltimore 34 miles away (Yuck !)

Less than 10 seconds after the launch we could see it here and we could even see it jettison the first stage

Getting higher.

These were the last that we could see it. It was 180 miles up and 112 miles down range. So, it was in orbit. Amazing as it only took 2 minutes..

Good night. Lots of stars !

Looking at the light pollution from York, PA 25 miles to the north

Hundreds of miles away. Just some smoke


Comet McNaught - Jan 08, 2007 and a nice sunset. Very hard to take a photo of it.


Auroral Activity Nov 07, 2004

These photos were taken near Glen Rock, Pennsylvania

NOTE: I forgot to set the camera back from daylight savings time so all times on the photo are one hour fast.

I looked out at 9:56pm and they were very visible to the naked eye. We are lucky as it's very dark to the north where we live. We do get some light pollution to the NE and W due to York and Hanover, Pennsylvania but nothing to the north.

Taken with a 5.1 Mega-pixel Nikon Coolpix 5400; exposure time ranged from 14.04 - 22.65 seconds


By 10:29 it was quiet. They were visible but only with the camera

I get the SPACALRT's via email and at 10:43 it was starting back up again.

Exposure times ranged between 12 - 20 seconds


By 11:18 the red was starting to be noticable. It's interesting that the cycles this
year, as well as in 2004, start out green / blue but progress to red

Took some at a very short exposure time, appx. 8 seconds, to see if I could avoid washing
out the photo and capture what it looks like with your eyes

It's 11:30 and still going strong.

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