Nikon & NASA

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Nikon returns to outer space! The President of Nikon, Michio Kariya, announced a Holiday gift to Nikon from NASA with an order of Nikon D3S DSLR’s for use on the Space Shuttle.

The week before Christmas, December 21, 2009, Nikon made public an order from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) for eleven Nikon D3S digital single lens reflex cameras and seven AF-S NIKKOR 14-24mm f/2.8G ED lenses. I guess they already had a few Nikkor lenses in house! NASA has indicated that these are part of their ongoing documentation work with the Space Shuttle and the International Space Station (ISS).

NASA continues their highly innovative technology work, (see NASA Technology) and long term use of Nikon cameras. The full press release from Nikon includes a chronology of Nikon and NASA history dating from 1971 to the present.


The Nikon D3S is the latest FX format (full frame) DSLR from Nikon that includes very high performance specifications (see article Low Light King below). Ranging from wide ranging ISO capability to HD video, this camera will provide NASA with many options for its documentation mission.

Nikon’s AF-S Nikkor 14-24 f/2.8 ED lens is a wide angle full frame (35 mm equivalent) lens with a f/2.8  aperture at all focal lengths. This is an award winning lens with continued excellent reviews for performance and image quality. It also provide close focusing as well as wide angle ability.

CD Price – ‘drg’

Related Content
Nikon USA
Nikon Home Page
Nikon D3S – New Low Light King
Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 14-24mm f/2.8G ED
Nikon Camera Equipment Forum

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  • Starriderrick says:

    Good news… When NASA does something they always go…BIG. I look forward to some imagery from these space photographers. :O)


  • Photo-John says:

    The 14-24mm lens seems like a strange choice for taking photos from the Space Shuttle. They must be for taking pictures in and of the shuttle and not for pictures of the Earth or other planets.

  • CD Price - drg says:

    The 14-24 must have been selected for getting the foreground in the shot as the construction work continues on the ISS. I wonder how much video NASA is planning to take with these cameras. A short wide angle lens is perfect for this type of work. The deep focus you can achieve with this type of lens just about negates any problem with clear and well focused work.

    The potential for extreme lighting and rapid changes in the llumination must be a huge challenge. There are features in the newer metering and AF system on the D3 series that should be thoroughly tested. I want to see the photos and videos when they become available!

  • Starriderrick says:

    ” A short wide angle lens is perfect for this type of work.The deep focus you can achieve with this type of lens just about negates any problem with clear and well focused work.” Good point Chris.. I’m lovin the Siggy 10-20 for this exact reason. :O) NASA should come up with some fantastic W/A shots.


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