APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Comments and questions about the APOD on the main view screen.
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APOD Robot
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APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by APOD Robot » Mon Feb 25, 2013 5:05 am

Image Fly Me to the Moons

Explanation: Sometimes the Moon is a busy direction. Last week, for example, our very Moon passed in front of the planet Jupiter. While capturing this unusual spectacle from New South Wales, Australia, a quick-thinking astrophotographer realized that a nearby plane might itself pass in front of the Moon, and so quickly reset his camera to take a continuous series of short duration shots. As hoped, for a brief instant, that airplane, the Moon, and Jupiter were all visible in a single exposure, which is shown above. But the project was not complete -- a longer exposure was then taken to bring up three of the Jupiter's own moons: Io, Calisto, and Europa (from left to right). Unfortunately, this triple spectacle soon disappeared. Less than a second later, the plane flew away from the Moon. A few seconds after that, the Moon moved to cover all of Jupiter. A few minutes after that, Jupiter reappeared on the other side of the Moon, and even a few minutes after that the Moon moved completely away from Jupiter. Although hard to catch, planes cross in front of the Moon quite frequently, but the Moon won't eclipse Jupiter again for another three years.

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Ann
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Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by Ann » Mon Feb 25, 2013 5:34 am

APOD Robot wrote:
Although hard to catch, planes cross in front of the Moon quite frequently
Pilot: "Where are we?"
Autopilot (tinny voice): "We're in front of the Moon. Stupid."


It's a very nice APOD! :D I think Moonlady should like it!

Ann
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OzRattler
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Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by OzRattler » Mon Feb 25, 2013 5:38 am

I would wager an Airbus A330-200 operated by Jetstar out of Hobart. Flight.....JQ724. Though that might be a little TOO early.

There. I took a punt.

Have fun!

OzRattler.....

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OzRattler.

.....insanity is so confusing.....

pilotmacdonald

Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by pilotmacdonald » Mon Feb 25, 2013 6:29 am

Mr. Gibbs said he drove to somewhere near central Victoria (Melbourne.) The moon crossing there, according to him, was about 2340 local time. There are three flights scheduled on a daily basis out of Melbourne on Mondays.

JQ 171
AA 7156
QF 203

All three are scheduled to fly A320's.

http://airportguide.com/airport/Austral ... rtures.php

Not sure how to go back in airport histories to get flight departures... Normal schedules was all I had thunk up! :)

pilotmacdonald

Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by pilotmacdonald » Mon Feb 25, 2013 6:44 am

Now that I think about it and look closely at the photo, that plane looks too long to be an A320. An A330 seems a better fit. Going back to the flight departures and checking, there are three flights leaving at 2330 (10 minutes to taxi and take off!)

CZ 322
AF 9723
KL 4324

All three schedule A330's. It's actually one physical flight but what the operating carrier was and its flight number gets muddied by codeshare. So, it could have been one of these three.

Am I getting close?????
:roll:

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Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by ThePiper » Mon Feb 25, 2013 7:36 am

Ann wrote: Pilot: "Where are we?"
Autopilot (tinny voice): "We're in front of the Moon. Stupid."

It's a very nice APOD! :D I think Moonlady should like it!

Ann
Pilot: "??.. hicks... the left or the right one?" :roll:

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Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by LongBow986 » Mon Feb 25, 2013 7:37 am

Well, theres not much i can do about finding out the flight number, but my money's on it being a 737-800 or 900 *shrug*

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Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by alter-ego » Mon Feb 25, 2013 8:17 am

I find some uncertainty and confusion in determining Greg's location, but based on an 11:40pm contact time and the moon's altitude (picture on web site), his position appears about midway between Melbourne and Canberra. If this is the correct region, then the aircraft flight path is from the Canberra direction, and likely not from Melbourne. Again, I think my uncertainty is fairly large. I've assumed that Greg's picture of the moon and his scope is close to the occultation time. Orion is visible in his picture to provide angular scaling and the terrain is quite flat so my rought estimate the moon's altitude ≈8.5°.
A pessimist is nothing more than an experienced optimist

pilotmacdonaldright

Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by pilotmacdonaldright » Mon Feb 25, 2013 8:33 am

Planetarium app confirms near occultation time of Jupiter and Moon at about 11:40 PM on 2/18/2013 near Melbourne. Three flights are all the same A-330 plane departing at 11:30 PM local time on 2/18/2013 near Melbourne. I believe pilotmacdonald is correct!

SmartAlec

Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by SmartAlec » Mon Feb 25, 2013 8:34 am

What type of airplane is this? I would certainly have to guess that it is a JET.

:lol2:

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Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by orionll » Mon Feb 25, 2013 8:38 am

Looks like a twin engine commercial jet with blended winglets, so perhaps a Boeing 737, 757, 767, or Airbus A330.

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Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by Moonlady » Mon Feb 25, 2013 9:17 am

Ann wrote:
APOD Robot wrote:
Although hard to catch, planes cross in front of the Moon quite frequently
Pilot: "Where are we?"
Autopilot (tinny voice): "We're in front of the Moon. Stupid."


It's a very nice APOD! :D I think Moonlady should like it!

Ann
:yes: :thumb_up:

DF9CY

Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by DF9CY » Mon Feb 25, 2013 9:24 am

Hi
for me it is also interesting, how far may this jet be away from the photographer ??
Assuming the Moon's virtual diameter being around 0.5 degrees and the plane's length to be about 50m, you get (simply by measuring the dimensions on the screen):

The virtual extension of the plane is ca : 11mm / 157mm * 0.5 degs => 0.03503 degs

Distance ~ 50m / tan 0.03503 => 82km

Am I right ??

Last year I imaged a plane crossing the sun close to the horizon. I estimated a distance of ca 370 km ...

Christoph

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Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by LongBow986 » Mon Feb 25, 2013 9:49 am

what about the contrail being produced, considering its still considered summer in Australia, wouldnt that mean this aircraft is also at cruising altitude to produce the said contrail?

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Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by CapturingTheNight » Mon Feb 25, 2013 9:58 am

Thank you so much for featuring my image as todays APOD. Achieving an APOD has been a big life goal of mine. I am incredibly humbled and grateful for the support of my work. :D


Will be watching this thread with interest on the hunt for the plane (I don't know which or what flight it was either at the moment). I am more than happy to provide more information (like exact location) which I am sure would make the hunt easier, if wanted. But would that make it too easy? I guess between the image itself, my blog post about it on my website and programs like stellarium, the photographers ephermeris and some sort of flight path archive, one could arrive at an answer with enough snooping. I'll hold back any extra info for now (or until you are all shouting at me to provide it :lol2: )

tigermsm

Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by tigermsm » Mon Feb 25, 2013 11:00 am

Judging by the long body shape I would guess a B757. Not even going there with the flight number!

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Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by fausto.lubatti » Mon Feb 25, 2013 11:06 am

A really nice and interesting shot: being ready to capture such a rare event demonstrates the skill of the photographer! ;-)

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Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by Boomer12k » Mon Feb 25, 2013 11:52 am

Nice timing.

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Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by mister T » Mon Feb 25, 2013 12:08 pm

Double bonus:

What are they serving in first class? and what is the pilot's son's favorite color?

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Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by C Downunder » Mon Feb 25, 2013 12:25 pm

GG congrats.

I suggest there may be interested in your equipment specs for the shooting session.

Looking very closely at the back tail fin ...... is that a possum or a polly from Canberra clinging ...

I would give time of photoshoot first (those keen can try and calculate your position), then give location. I would not hold off to long. There is going to be uncertainty anyway as flights on busy flight paths can be down to a few minutes.

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Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by neufer » Mon Feb 25, 2013 1:14 pm

Click to play embedded YouTube video.
C Downunder wrote:
GG congrats.

I suggest there may be interested in your equipment specs for the shooting session.

Looking very closely at the back tail fin ...... is that a possum or a polly from Canberra clinging ...

I would give time of photoshoot first (those keen can try and calculate your position), then give location. I would not hold off to long. There is going to be uncertainty anyway as flights on busy flight paths can be down to a few minutes.
Art Neuendorffer

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Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by orin stepanek » Mon Feb 25, 2013 1:28 pm

A neat APOD! 8-) I decided to look for more! http://www.google.com/search?q=moon+pla ... s&tbm=isch
Orin

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Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by FloridaMike » Mon Feb 25, 2013 2:44 pm

orin stepanek wrote:A neat APOD! 8-) I decided to look for more! http://www.google.com/search?q=moon+pla ... s&tbm=isch

the Bing Challenge... :wink:
Certainty is an emotion. So follow your spindle neurons.

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Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by owlice » Mon Feb 25, 2013 3:20 pm

FloridaMike wrote: the Bing Challenge... :wink:
I thought you meant Crosby. :-(
A closed mouth gathers no foot.

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Re: APOD: Fly Me to the Moons (2013 Feb 25)

Post by MargaritaMc » Mon Feb 25, 2013 3:23 pm

Downunder » Mon Feb 25, 2013 12:25 pm

GG congrats.

I suggest there may be interested in your equipment specs for the shooting session.
I recall reading this in the February submissions when Mr Gibbs first posted this image.
Re: Submissions: 2013 February
by CapturingTheNight » Mon Feb 18, 2013 6:55 pm

Hello all,

No matter how much you plan and prepare, sometimes you just have to be very lucky.

I had my camera imaging The Moon and Jupiter occultation through my telescope at about 10 second intervals when I noticed the lights from a plane close to the moon. I realised that there was a chance that it would pass in front of the moon, so I quickly canceled the remote timer I was using to take the shots and instead started shooting high speed continuous frames. I managed to get this plane crossing the moon in five individual frames just as Jupiter was about to be occulted by The Moon.

This is a two image composite. The Moon, Jupiter and the plane are all one single image. I then took an overexposed image to bring up the Galilean Moons of (from left to right) Io, Callisto and Europa. Ganymede had already been occulted by The Moon.

18/02/2013
Canon 60D (Prime Focus)
10inch F/4 Newtonian Telescope
NEQ6 Pro Goto Telescope Mount set on Lunar Tracking
ISO 100
Single 1/200th of a second exposure for The Moon, Plane and Jupiter
Single 1/10th of a second exposure for the moons of Jupiter
http://asterisk.apod.com/viewtopic.php?p=193302#p193302
"In those rare moments of total quiet with a dark sky, I again feel the awe that struck me as a child. The feeling is utterly overwhelming as my mind races out across the stars. I feel peaceful and serene."
&mdash; Dr Debra M. Elmegreen, Fellow of the AAAS