"They upgrade cameras regularly… because their sensors get damaged by radiation" - Astronaut Thomas Pesquet on photographing earth from the International Space Station

Thomas Pesquet's photo taken from the International Space Station
(Image credit: Thomas Pesquet/ESA)

There are few better views to be had of Earth than aboard the International Space Station (ISS), humanity's floating laboratory orbiting 250 miles above. During the almost 400 days of his missions in 2016-2017 and again in 2021, European Space Agency astronaut Thomas Pesquet performed six spacewalks and became the first French commander of the ISS. While he was up there he also took thousands of photographs, the best of which are collected in his new book The Earth in Our Hands: Photos from the International Space Station

The message of the book is profound and Earth-centric. "The scale of Earth is hard to comprehend from its surface, but from the ISS everything is at a scale that you can perceive with your own senses," says Pesquet. "It was a very sensory experience and I wanted to convey that the Earth is in our hands – it's fragile and we have to protect it." However, as well as experiencing the overview effect and photographing Earth from above, Pesquet also found time to indulge in something even more challenging – astrophotography.  

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Jamie Carter
Astrophotography expert

Jamie has been writing about all aspects of technology for over 14 years, producing content for sites like TechRadar, T3, Forbes, Mashable, MSN, South China Morning Post, and BBC Wildlife, BBC Focus and BBC Sky At Night magazines. 

As the editor for www.WhenIsTheNextEclipse.com, he has a wealth of enthusiasm and expertise for all things astrophotography, from capturing the Perseid Meteor Shower, lunar eclipses and ring of fire eclipses, photographing the moon and blood moon and more.

He also brings a great deal of knowledge on action cameras, 360 cameras, AI cameras, camera backpacks, telescopes, gimbals, tripods and all manner of photography equipment.