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So Metal: Even as it Melts, Camera Able to Capture Fiery SpaceX Launch (PHOTOS)

Photographer Bill Ingalls has been taking pictures for NASA since 1989, but Tuesday was a first for him: for the first time, one of his cameras had its faced melted off by a rocket launch.

Having set up six remote cameras near Vandenberg Air Force Base's Space Launch Complex 4E in Santa Barbara County, California, Ingalls was ready to chronicle the launch of NASA's twin GRACE-FO satellites, which were hitched on the back of a SpaceX rocket.

Unfortunately, Ingalls got an unwelcome surprise when he walked about a quarter-mile from the launchpad to retrieve his camera after the event was over. As it turns out, his Canon DSLR was melted in a brush fire that was ignited by the Falcon 9 launch, Ingalls wrote in a Facebook post.

Speaking to, Ingalls explained that Vandenberg's fire department arrived at the launchpad after liftoff to secure the area and put out any fires that might have been started by the launch.

"The Vandenberg Fire Department put the fire out pretty quickly, but unfortunately my camera got toasted," the photographer told the website.

But it wasn't all a loss for Ingalls — aside from his other cameras managing to get pictures, the crispy Canon did manage to get one good image of the launch.

The brave Canon even managed to photograph its own death.

Surprisingly enough, Ingalls had four other cameras that were much closer to the launchpad that manage to survive the launch.

"At least [it] got a frame before the camera bit the dust," Ingall wrote on Facebook.

RIP, beloved camera. You died shooting.

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