06 January 2010

International Space Station coming to a city near you!

The International Space Station (ISS) is one of the brightest satellites visible in the sky, and for the next few evenings it is making a particularly good set of passes over the USA and Canada in the evening. If you have not seen it fly over, it is worth a few minutes out of your day to use an online tool such as the Simple Satellite Tracker from spaceweather.com or the NASA Satellite Tracker.

Here in San Francisco we can look forward to four consecutive evenings of good fly overs. Wednesday 6th it is visible from 6:36 to 6:38 pm, Thursday 7th it is visible from 5:59 to 6:02 pm, and Friday 8th it is visible from 5:44 to 5:47 pm.

The ISS looks like a fast-moving airplane, but the light is perfectly smooth (not blinking, not red and white) and the path is a very clean arc from west to east. Given the current orientation of the ISS as it orbits Earth, the upcoming passes across North America will generally be from the west to east and from the south to north.

1 comment:

A Sky Full of Stars said...

Had a great flyover on the east coast tonight! Heavens-Above and Twitter's @twisst46 are two more excellent flyover sources :)