Sorry to put this out with such short notice. I had wanted to get this done about a month ago but just been too busy.
So youtube, and the ISS are looking for good ideas for outreach projects to do on the ISS. Well I’ve got a good idea. The idea is that from an orbital platform, there are certain portions of the sky to which you get 24/7 views. If a planet’s in that window, then you can record a very long time lapse of it. A stripped down 12 in telescope would provide perfectly adequate resolution for a project like this. After that you can database the data and recompile it into any timescale you want. This would provide the first long term views on the seasonal changing of the Jovian atmosphere (the bands appearing and disappearing), dust storms on Mars, the idling clouds of Venus and so-on. The changes in the timescale will not just give people a far more intimate feel with their celestial back yard, it will bring the solar system into dynamic life in a way that Hubble never did.
Unfortunately I’m too old to enter the contest, so I’m putting the idea out there s ‘up for grabs’.
You can find details of the SpaceLab here:
Footage of ISS and Voyager 1 coutesy of NASA and collaborators.