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Beautiful photographs of what it could be

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#1 Raginar


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Posted 22 February 2013 - 11:42 AM


I saw this on Imgur and wanted to share with ya'll. This guy apparently takes shots from places that have no light pollution, and simulates what it would be like in large cities with the night sky available.


#2 MEE


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Posted 23 February 2013 - 12:03 PM

Well....sort of. Generally, the limiting magnitude for naked eye viewing on an exceptionally clear, moonless night is between 7.5 and 8.0 (there is much debate on this). I can't be sure, but it seems like the limiting magnitude of these photos is much fainter than that. Also, photographers usually add contrast to their photos to make them stand out more.

And certainly, the human eye can't see colors very well at night.

So, I don't think this is a realistic interpretation of what we would see if there were no light pollution in the cities.

Here is a photo that I found that the photographer (Alan Dyer, a reputable amateur astronomer) claims simulates the naked eye appearance of the Milky Way:


His description of how he processed the photo is informative.

#3 MEE


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Posted 23 February 2013 - 12:21 PM

Even if these photos may not be realistic simulations, if they get people talking about the importance of reducing light pollution, well, they've served their purpose.

Still, I believe that the general public would be far more interested in the other benefits of reducing light pollution, such as the cost savings, more efficient use of energy, and better visibility due to reduced glare.

#4 stevetaylor199


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Posted 02 March 2013 - 09:28 PM

These images appear to have some pretty extreme dynamic range. Obviously most, or all, of the details in foreground buildings would not be seen IRL.

They sure are compelling photos though. They're apocalyptic at first glance, yet calming and inviting.

#5 ForgottenMObject



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Posted 03 March 2013 - 07:03 PM

Wow... Those are beautiful photos!

If people truly stopped, saw, and understood what they were missing by filling the sky with wasted light, maybe some real progress would be made on this issue. Photos like these, while not exact reflections of reality, are still stunning and can get people thinking, which is good, IMHO.

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