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Extreme Hatsuhinode | Man Captures First Sunrise of 2014 from Space

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Sunrise from 30km above ground | all images courtesy Keisuke Iwaya

Hatsuhinode (初日の出) in Japanese is the first sunrise of the year. It’s considered an auspicious event so much so that it’s enough to get people out of their warm beds to crazy heights, like the top of Mt. Fuji, for a view of the first sunrise.

But no one had ever traversed as high as Keisuke Iwaya did earlier this month when he sent a balloon-powered camera 30 km (18.6 miles) into space to capture the first sunrise, trumping those suckers at Mt. Fuji’s summit by about 16.3 miles. And he did it all on a shoestring budget – 25,000 yen (about $250) spent at his local hardware shop. This excludes the cost of the Gopro Hero 3, as well as the iPad he used to control his device from the ground. Both survived the rise and fall.

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photos of the makeshift device that was sent into space. Written in bold is “not a dangerous object” in case an unknowing passerby finds it

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On January 1, 2014 at around 5:30 AM the Hokkaido native set his contraption into the air. The entire flight lasted 110 minutes before the balloon popped (as programmed) 30km above land. The camera fell back to Hokkaido and was retrieved thanks to a GPS device.

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launching the balloon

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source: RocketNews24

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2 comments

1 Tippy { 01.14.14 at 6:20 pm }

Wow, man made captures 1st Sunrise! soo cool!! thank u 4 sharing! What’s 4tos!!

2 karl { 01.15.14 at 1:03 am }

>It’s considered an auspicious event so much so that it’s enough to get people out of their warm beds to crazy heights, like the top of Mt. Fuji, for a view of the first sunrise.

Many people go at the top of Fuji in *summer time* to see the sunrise, but on January 1st… it’s an event reserved only for seasoned climbers with winter equipment which leads sometimes to death like in 2007. ;)