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Geoscientific Instrumentation, Methods and Data Systems An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 5, issue 2
Geosci. Instrum. Method. Data Syst., 5, 289-304, 2016
https://doi.org/10.5194/gi-5-289-2016
© Author(s) 2016. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Geosci. Instrum. Method. Data Syst., 5, 289-304, 2016
https://doi.org/10.5194/gi-5-289-2016
© Author(s) 2016. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Research article 19 Jul 2016

Research article | 19 Jul 2016

Automatic georeferencing of astronaut auroral photography

Maik Riechert1,a, Andrew P. Walsh2, Alexander Gerst3, and Matthew G. G. T. Taylor1 Maik Riechert et al.
  • 1European Space Agency, European Space Technology Centre, Keplerlaan 1, 2201AZ Noordwijk ZH, the Netherlands
  • 2European Space Agency, European Space Astronomy Centre, P.O. Box 78, 28691 Villanueva de la Cañada, Madrid, Spain
  • 3European Space Agency, European Astronaut Centre, Linder Hoehe, 51147 Cologne, Germany
  • anow at: Department of Meteorology, University of Reading, Reading, UK

Abstract. Astronauts on board the International Space Station (ISS) have taken thousands of high-resolution colour photographs of the aurora, which could be made useful for research if their pointing information could be reconstructed. We describe a method to do this using the star field in the images, and how the reconstructed pointing can then be used to georeference the images to a similar level of accuracy in existing all-sky camera images. We have used this method to make georeferenced auroral images taken from the ISS available and here describe the resulting data set, processing software, and how to access them.

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Astronauts on board the International Space Station have taken thousands of high-quality images of the northern and southern lights (aurorae). Because the images were not taken as part of a specific research project, no information about exactly where the camera was pointing was available. We have used the stars in the images to reconstruct this information. Now we can tell the latitudes and longitudes of the aurorae in the images and use them for research. The data are publicly available.
Astronauts on board the International Space Station have taken thousands of high-quality images...
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