Astrophotography Has Come a Long Way, Baby – Part II

27 Mar

In 2014, I compared a photo I’d taken of the Orion Nebula with my iPhone to the first-ever photograph of the nebula (taken by Henry Draper in 1880) and noted how similar they looked. I’ve continued to photograph the nebula through my telescope with a smartphone since then and noticed that my latest photo matches one taken by Draper near the end of his life, exactly 140 years earlier!

In ten seconds – with equipment we can carry in our pockets – we’re able to outdo what used to take more than two hours with the best photographic tools on the planet. And, of course, our smartphones can capture colour! See my full resolution iPhone image of the Orion Nebula on Flickr and learn more about the pioneering astrophotographer Henry Draper on Wikipedia.

You can also find Draper’s 1882 photo, which appears to have been damaged, here via the Cosmic Reflections blog.

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