Astrophoto: Desert Space Station

Old meets space-age in this image of the International Space Station passing over an ancient saguaro cactus at the Saguaro National Park East near Tucson, Arizona. Robert Sparks (a.k.a. @halfastro or hale-bopp37 on Flickr) captured this beautiful image on February 6, 2013. While the ISS is just over 12 years old, the saguaro seen here could be upwards of 200 years old. These prickly old soldiers don’t usually start to grow arms until they are between 50 to 100 years of age, and they may live for perhaps 200 years or more.

Rob also captured the expanse of the awesome desert night sky, too.

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Nancy Atkinson

Nancy has been with Universe Today since 2004, and has published over 6,000 articles on space exploration, astronomy, science and technology. She is the author of two books: "Eight Years to the Moon: the History of the Apollo Missions," (2019) which shares the stories of 60 engineers and scientists who worked behind the scenes to make landing on the Moon possible; and "Incredible Stories from Space: A Behind-the-Scenes Look at the Missions Changing Our View of the Cosmos" (2016) tells the stories of those who work on NASA's robotic missions to explore the Solar System and beyond. Follow Nancy on Twitter at https://twitter.com/Nancy_A and and Instagram at and https://www.instagram.com/nancyatkinson_ut/

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