Exact place, exact second gets shot

With the sun as a backdrop, astro-photographer Thierry Legault captured the crucial moment of the space shuttle Atlantis docking with the International Space Station.

It took detailed planning and travelling from France to Madrid in Spain for the French photographer to capture the event, visible for just 0.54 of a second because of the speed of the two spacecraft moving at 26,554km/h.

"I had to be standing less than 500m from the centre of the visibility band and there were no second chances if I had missed."

The moment was captured just 50 minutes before Atlantis docked with the International Space Station.

The photograph was taken on May 16 using a specialised mounted camera and a 355mm telescopic lens. Legault combined a pinhole-sized aperture, letting in only a little light, with an extremely fast shutter speed.

- NZ Herald

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