SBIRSGEO4 by United Launch Alliance - Michael Seeley: Photos of Stuff
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Three rockets, two frames

Buried in the mega-trail composite version of this #SBIRS #AtlasV streak is a frame (three, actually, but the first and last frames show it very faintly) with a non-blinking streak passing over Cape Canaveral Air Force Station / 45th Space Wing at Patrick Air Force Base, Fla. (high and to the left of the launch streak). In the final version, the trails all but obscure it, so this is a composite with just the launch streak (7:48 pm) and the frame showing the faint streak (7:25 pm).

With the help of, I can with reasonable certainty conclude that I caught the OAO 3 rocket body passing overhead. Launched from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on August 21, 1972 from LC-36 (now leased to Blue Origin), this is an Atlas-Centaur rocket that carried an observatory named "Copernicus" that was at the time NASA's heaviest scientific payload. (Source: WIRED)

The third rocket? In a cool display of 45+ years of rocketry, the brightly lit (and not structurally discernable, sorry) pad to the left of LC-41 is LC-39A, with the Falcon Heavy, upright, and awash in lights.

Also, my thanks to Philip Metzger. I had forgotten about this little streak, but a twitter conversation last night about airplanes in the shot reminded me.

OAO3 streak is a 30-sec exposure at ISO800 and F5 and the launch streak is a 168-sec exposure at ISO100 and f18. Edits done in Lightroom, composite done in Photoshop and final edits done (again) in Lightroom.

(Photo by Michael Seeley / We Report Space) — at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.

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