timelapse

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Science

Spectacular Footage Captures a NASA Probe as it Touches the Sun for the First Time

December 20, 2021

Grace Ebert

NASA marked an impressive milestone when its Parker Solar Probe was the first ever to touch the sun and return earlier this year, and footage from its historic mission offers a stunning glimpse at the massive star’s upper atmosphere. The black-and-white timelapse shows a view from the probe as it hurls through a flurry of glowing bands and sparks that dart across the frame with celestial bodies panning in the background. These structures, known as coronal streamers, are part of the magnetic field surrounding the star—it doesn’t have a solid surface, meaning satellites like Parker come in contact with the fiery matter while flying through it. These sweeping plumes are often visible from Earth during solar eclipses.

During its travel, the probe also captured the Milky Way, Earth, and other planets from a rare angle, which astrophysicist Grant Tremblay labeled in the screenshots below. This was the satellite’s eighth attempt to permeate the sun’s atmosphere since it launched in 2018, and the successful mission garnered quite a few staggering statistics. NASA shares:

At closest approach, Parker Solar Probe hurtles around the sun at approximately 430,000 mph (700,000 kph). That’s fast enough to get from Philadelphia to Washington, D.C., in one second… At closest approach to the Sun, the front of Parker Solar Probe’s solar shield faces temperatures approaching 2,500 F (1,377 C). The spacecraft’s payload will be near room temperature.

For a similar look at the sun’s details, watch this timelapse chronicling one month of its evolution. (via PetaPixel)

 

 

 



Science

A 5-Day Timelapse Documents 24 Hours of Sunlight at the South Pole

November 24, 2021

Grace Ebert

What does a full day of sun look like at the earth’s southernmost point? Robert Schwarz, who was stationed in the antarctic for 15 years as part of the experimental Keck project, filmed an illuminating timelapse while at the snowy location that shows the bright star floating above the horizon for an entire five-day period. Shot in March 2017, the footage captures the bright sky just before the first sunset in months, when the pole experiences a dark period from April to August.

Schwarz documents a variety of natural phenomena, including the dancing lights of the aurora australis, moon phases, and the Miky Way, on Vimeo. (via Kottke)

 

 

 



Photography Science

78,846 Photos of the Sun Are Stitched Together into a Mesmerizing Timelapse of Its Movements

November 19, 2021

Grace Ebert

Using data from NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory, filmmaker Seán Doran composed an entrancing timelpase of the sun’s glowing coronal loops during a month-long period. The video project compiles 78,846 ångström-171 photographs from August 2014 that show the bright, curved structures, which are made of hot plasma, as they burst upward. Colorized in gold in the timelapse, the arced loops often form a bridge between dark sunspots, or places where powerful magnetic fields breach the surface and flow into the massive star’s atmosphere.

For similarly stunning glimpses at astronomical happenings, head to Doran’s YouTube, which features footage of Earth’s orbit, Comet Neowise, and the rugged topography of the Red Planet. (via PetaPixel)

 

 

 



Science

Life and Death Meet in a Striking Macro Timelapse of Carnivorous Plants and Their Prey

November 3, 2021

Grace Ebert

The Green Reapers” is the latest timelapse from French video artist Thomas Blanchard that captures the cutthroat relationship between insects and carnivorous plants in microscopic detail. Shot in 8K during the course of four months, the experimental project splices short clips of moths cracking through their chrysalises and Venus flytraps seizing slugs and worms, juxtaposing rebirth and death within seconds. Blanchard is known for unveiling the otherwise unseen transformations of the natural world—see his previous video works on flowers, seasons, and swirling liquids—and you can find more of his stunning compilations on Vimeo and Instagram.

 

 

 



Documentary Photography Science

A Short Film Dives into the 15-Year Process Behind the Documentary 'Fantastic Fungi'

September 1, 2021

Grace Ebert

We shared footage of the mesmerizing mycelium networks pulsing underneath our feet back in 2019 to mark the opening of Louie Schwartzberg’s Fantastic Fungi, and now the dedicated director takes viewers behind the scenes to show his painstaking process. Filmed throughout a 15-year period in his home studio, Schwartzberg’s timelapses zero in on myriad spores as they burst open, sprawl in every direction, and morph in color and texture. They’re a compelling visual representation of time and nature’s cyclical processes, which he explores in a new short film produced by WIRED.

Most of the challenges in capturing the footage center around predicting where an organism will grow to keep it within the shot and understanding the frame rates of different lifeforms. Schwartzberg explains:

For example, a mosquito on your arm, having a little drop of blood, takes a look at that hand coming towards it in ultra slow motion and has plenty of time to take off because its metabolic rate, its lifespan, is way shorter than our lifespan. And our lifespan is way shorter than a Redwood tree’s lifespan. This reality of real-time human point of view is not the only point of view, and that’s really the beauty of cameras and time-lapse cinematography. It’s actually a time machine.

Watch the full making-of above—note that it does include a clip of a mouse decomposing near the end—and find Fantastic Fungi on Netflix. (via The Kids Should See This)

 

 

 



Photography

Spring Emerges in an Enchanting Timelapse of Denmark's Landscapes

August 2, 2021

Grace Ebert

Roskilde, Denmark-based photographer Casper Rolsted ventures into the deciduous forests of Skjoldungernes Land National Park, out to the mist-covered inlets of Ise Fjord, and across the ice-age regions of West Zealand to capture springtime transformations in Scandinavia. Daffodils and lilies slough off the remaining snow as they burst open, the sunlight illuminates the environment for longer periods, and expanses of brown grass and leaf cover morph into verdant terrain.

A timelapse shot both on the ground and aerially, “Seasons of Denmark—Spring” is the first of four short films chronicling the country’s seasonal landscapes. Keep an eye out for the remaining three on Rolsted’s Vimeo, where you can also find more of his montaged adventures around Norway, Scotland, and other remote areas.