How does NASA film photograph rocket launches?

Who watched the Falcon 9 Heavy launch recently? I certainly did, and it was one of the most impressive feats of modern technology I have seen in a very long time. One of our users was actually at the scene and you can find his photographs of the rocket launch here. Whilst his photos are very good, have you wondered how on earth they took the photos of the rocket when it was 5 miles up? Clearly showing separations, ignitions, the roll and more? Truth is, the camera equipment used to photograph these rocket launches is phenomenal, and many of us would drool over such optical equipment. The short range lenses for the first 50 seconds of flight have a focal length of over 4 metres in a cassegrain configuration, and the lenses for filming flight after 50 seconds have refractory focal lengths of 12.7 metres! If you have taken some photos of a rocket launch why not add them to our paid per view, free photo hosting site Clickasnap?

Cover image of the Falcon Heavy world first launch courtesy of Butch Reinhart

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