Why is that star moving?

Don Schwenneker Image
Tuesday, June 13, 2017

It just never gets old. Every time the International Space Station, or ISS, passes over I have to stop and be amazed.

If you've never watched it go by, tonight will be another chance. The ISS will fly over NC and be lit up by the setting sun.

When you see it, it will look like a bright star slowly moving across the sky. But, it's not really moving that slow.

The ISS flies through space at 17, 150/hr, or 5 miles per second. That, my friends, is hauling!

You will be able to see it this evening from around 8:50 p.m. until 8:55 p.m., if the clouds aren't to thick.

You'll want to start looking to the North and west and it will climb into the sky to about 70 above the horizon. Then it will cross the sky and disappear into the SE horizon.

As it goes by, remember a couple of things.

1. There's 3 people in it. Americans Peggy Whitson and Jack Fischer, and Russian Fyodor Yurchikhin.

2. It's actually pretty large. It's just over the size of a football field and weighs over 450 tons (the same as 450 automobiles).

3. This is the last, easily visible pass, for the month.

Finally, I stumble across this site that is pretty cool. You can see what the astronauts would see if they are looking down at the earth. It's not a camera, but it's real time with NASA maps. You can visit it here. Or feel free to visit NASA's live stream from various cameras on the ISS here.

Happy Viewing!

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