Friday, February 3, 2017

Spot The Space Station

Watch the International Space Station pass overhead from several thousand worldwide locations. It is the third brightest object in the sky and easy to spot if you know when to look up.




Visible to the naked eye, it looks like a fast-moving plane only much higher and traveling thousands of miles an hour faster!

Following THIS LINK you can sign up to receive texts to be notified when the ISS is viewable from your location (Fort Worth is the nearest checkpoint for us in Keller).

The Spot The Station link provides information to explain what all the data means for the notification viewing availabilty.  In short, it answers just how to spot the station.

For instance, it will give you a text or e-mail that reads 

SpotTheStation! Time: Wed Apr 25 7:45 PM, Visible: 4 min, Max Height: 66 degrees, Appears: WSW, Disappears NE.


But what does all this sighting information mean?

Time is when the sighting opportunity will begin in your local time zone. All sightings will occur within a few hours before or after sunrise or sunset. This is the optimum viewing period as the sun reflects off the space station and contrasts against the darker sky.

Visible is the maximum time period the space station is visible before crossing back below the horizon.

Max Height is measured in degrees (also known as elevation). It represents the height of the space station from the horizon in the night sky. The horizon is at zero degrees, and directly overhead is ninety degrees. If you hold your fist at arm’s length and place your fist resting on the horizon, the top will be about 10 degrees.

Appears is the location in the sky where the station will be visible first. This value, like maximum height, also is measured in degrees from the horizon. The letters represent compass directions -- N is north, WNW is west by northwest, and so on.

Disappears represents where in the night sky the International Space Station will leave your field of view.





Happy ISS chasing

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