Demonstrating the remarkable versatility of the ISS as an observational platform, ISS astronaut Don Pettit captured this view of the Milky Way taken near the southern boundary of the ISS orbit track. The bright area in the upper right hand corner is the Keyhole Nebula, a distant molecular cloud where young stars are forming. On the left hand side of the frame, you can see the four bright stars of the Southern Cross (the bottom three stars are bright blue in the image, and the top one looks more yellow).
All around the world, light interference makes it hard for us to view the detail in the heavens that could be seen by our ancestors. Above the atmosphere in low-Earth orbit, ISS astronaut Don Pettit used his “Barn Door Tracker” and a digital camera to get astounding views of the heavens (see http://science.nasa.gov/ppod/y2003/10apr_barndoor.htm).
ISS006-E-28028, 21 February 2003
The Gateway to Astronaut Photography of Earth, http://eol.jsc.nasa.gov