The Disposable Camera Astronauts Have Sent On A Suicide Mission To Capture Photos Of Burning Spacecraft

Artists rendering of ATV-5  burning up during reentry into earth's atmosphere.

Artists rendering of ATV-5 burning up during reentry into earth’s atmosphere. (Photo by ESA)

The European Space Agency (ESA) is launching a camera into space via a supply ferry, the Automated Transfer Vehicle 5 (ATV-5) which headed to the International Space Station. Launching cameras into space isn’t particularly rare in itself, but this camera is kinda special. The Automated Transfer Vehicle Break-Up Camera was designed in just nine short months by team members of the ESA specifically for this mission. The Break-Up Camera is a disposable infrared camera that will photograph the reentry of the  ATV back into earth’s atmosphere where it is destined to burn up in a blaze of glory. [Read more...]