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DoctorTea
2011-May-10, 05:47 AM
What is the best Camera for taking photos of stars from the lunar surface?

PetersCreek
2011-May-10, 05:54 AM
What are your mission requirements and constraints?

DoctorTea
2011-May-10, 07:04 AM
Take the best photos of the signs of the Zodiac from the lunar surface possible.

PetersCreek
2011-May-10, 07:25 AM
Take the best photos of the signs of the Zodiac from the lunar surface possible.

That leaves a lot of potential requirements unanswered and doesn't address mission constraints at all.

"Best" isn't a very helpful descriptor without knowing a lot other factors. How much are you willing to spend on the "best"? Will it be operated remotely or will you carry it there personally and trip the shutter? How much to get it and you to the Moon and back? Maintain it? Operate it? Will long term thermal protection be required?

One "best" camera could be attached to a telescope weighing tons. Another could be best for remote operation, while another requires human fingers to work the shutter button. Another could be one that doesn't sit on the surface of the Moon at all but rather, orbits the Earth, like Hubble, et al.

RickJ
2011-May-10, 04:54 PM
Take the best photos of the signs of the Zodiac from the lunar surface possible.

First off the signs of the Zodiac aren't stars. Just locations along and either side of the ecliptic. A couple thousand years ago they sort of matched star constellations. That's not the case today. Take an image of say Gemini the constellation and another of Gemini the astrological sign and you'd have two very different star fields.

Either can be taken just fine from here on earth. You'd not see any difference between one taken in visible light from the earth or from the moon or from outer space. Other than the camera having to be designed to withstand the heat and cold variation of the moon and outer space along with operating in a vacuum the camera needs would be the same as doing it from earth.

Now if you mean taking these star fields or areas along the ecliptic in wavelengths that don't make it through our atmosphere you'd need several cameras as well as radio telescopes. A camera designed for X-ray imaging can't do anything else. Same for one for gamma rays or one for ultraviolet or one for infrared etc. Each requires a very different detector, different operating temperatures, different "lenses". I use quotes as focusing some of these wavelengths requires devices very different from what most think of as a lens.

All of this is better done from deep space rather than the moon. In fact we put telescopes at a couple Lagrange points for this very reason.

Basically any camera that can work under space conditions could take star fields on earth, moon or outer space that would be identical. A basic DSLR takes great starfield images from earth. If the camera can survive outer space conditions then it would take virtually identical ones from space or the moon. Best is too vague. But whatever meets your requirement as being best from the earth's surface would also be best from outer space and the moon if it survives the conditions.

Rick

Rick

DoctorTea
2011-May-10, 05:36 PM
I see. Thanks PetersCreek. Lots to think about. DoctorTea.

Amber Robot
2011-May-10, 06:57 PM
Because the constellations are usually asterisms of the brightest stars, the additional depth you might gain from an atmosphere-less site won't make any significant impact on your ability to photograph them.

DoctorTea
2011-May-10, 10:42 PM
Thanks to all. Close the thread as far as I am concerned. This was helpful. DoctorTea