Olympus cameras and NASA
I was at John's website and I came across this page:
Does anyone know the details of NASA's involvement with the Olympus cameras? Did they adopt the cameras in any way? What kind of lens is in the picture?
I know that the Hasselblad cameras went into space. Anyone know anything about the Olympus or other cameras?
Concerning manned spaceflight and still photography up to about 1980:
-) `Mercury´: Ansco 35mm, Hasselblad, Maurer (60mm static/instrument), Robot
-) `Gemini´: Contarex, Hasselblad, Maurer (60mm handheld)
-) `Apollo´: Eastman (stereo, lunar surface), Hasselblad, ITEK 5" (static, panoramic/swing-prism), ITEK 5" (static), Nikon, Unknown (35mm static)
-) `Skylab´: Hasselblad, Nikon, ITEK sixfold 70mm set (static), Actron 5" (static)
-) `Spaceshuttle´: ITEK 10" (static), Nikon
-) `Spacelab´: Robot, Zeiss 10" (static)
I don't have any information on Olympus cameras being used, but maybe they were used past 1980 or so..
EDIT: Being released in 1984 it is not surprising that the OM-4 in question does not show up in this list.
Last edited by AgX; 05-18-2009 at 03:32 AM. Click to view previous post history.
I don't know which flight, but (IIRC) an OM-4 (permanently set to "auto") went up with 250 exposure back, motor drive with a 50mm lens (with fixed 5.6 diaphragm plate). John, www.zuiko.com
The Space Shuttles between 1999 and at least 2005, used the Kodak DCS-760 DSLRs (based upon the Nikon F5). Frankly, this is the perfect application for this camera, because I would daresay that the only thing holding it back from still being a near state of the art camera even today, is the fact that as long as there is actual gravity, the camera body alone weighs close to 5 pounds. But in zero gravity, it would be sensational.
The Ansco Anscoset II (a rebadged Minolta Uniomat) and a Leica were the first 35mm cameras in space.
Apparently, the Leica was used to take standard B&W photos, while the Ansco was used with ultraviolet film for pictures of the stars in Orion.
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Well my question is how NASA "removed the reflex mirror" from a Ig. The Smithsonian should be a little more accurate. What they did was buy a stock camera without a built in viewfinder/rangefinder.
Originally Posted by Ken22485
Let's all use the comment form on the Smithsonian site and tell them.
Look at the wear of both cameras. See the rubbing on the front glass the of the viewfinder for the Leica.
What is the purpose of the switch at that finder? Does it have electrically illuminated framelines? Is that a custom finder?
Olympus cameras were equipped on STS-51-L. This flight, unfortunately is also known as the Challenger Disaster. The only modification required to the OM system was the replacement of the leatherette with a foil material due to out-gassing of the leatherette.
Currently, an E-3 system is in use on the ISS by Koichi Wakata who is part of JAXA. Rumor has it that no modifications were required.
And I assume that any camera wouldn't need any modifications if it won't be used outside the station (space walk). Am I right?
Originally Posted by Ken N