Look closely at the face ...

 

The International Space Station

Saturn

Here are some images of the International Space Station
passing across the sky.

The first group were taken on the morning of September 29, 2011.
The event was featured on 106 Jack FM.
Click here for a recording of the interview.

All these images are 15-second exposures.

They are followed by two images taken on the evening of August 12, 2013.

Click on any of the images for larger versions.

The International Space Station was due to make a pass which would take it almost directly overhead shortly after 6am.

Although the Sun wasn't up, the sky had started to get light, though the brighter stars were still visible.

Whilst waiting for the ISS, I took this shot of the constellation of Orion.

If you look below the 3 stars that form Orion's belt, you can make out the "sword" hanging from the belt, which includes the Orion Nebula - a huge cloud of interstellar gas where we have detected new stars forming.

The bright star to the lower left of the image is Sirius, the brightest star in the sky (apart from the Sun of course!)

Orion & Sirius

At 6:07, the International Space Station became visible, appearing as a bright dot climbing into the sky.

This is a view looking almost directly west across some fields.

The bright object high up left of centre is the planet Jupiter.

To find out when the ISS will be visible, go to http://spaceflight.nasa.gov/realdata/sightings/

Select "United Kingdom", then your country (e.g. England)
and choose the nearest location to you from the list.

The system will display any sightings due over the next 14 days.

ISS and Jupiter

The International Space Station as it climbed higher, with Jupiter shining brightly.

It took 3 minutes to reach its highest point in the sky before continuing on over towards the rising Sun in the east.

The ISS travels at 17,500 mph - that's 5 miles per second!

It takes an hour and a half to orbit the Earth, making 16 orbits every day.
This means that the astronauts on board see 16 sunrises and sunsets every 24 hours!

The ISS and Jupiter

Here is the ISS as it pased overhead at 9:30 pm on the evening of August 12, 2013.

This is a 30-second exposure.

The bright objectto the lower left of the track is the star Vega, 26 light-years away.

This is the ISS on its second pass that evening, at 11:07 pm.

This is a 15-second exposure.

Once again the bright object is Vega.

Just after the pass I saw two bright Perseid meteors.

A close-up of the track of the International Space Station.

The bend in the track is because the tripod was knocked by a curious cat a few seconds after the start of the exposure!

If you would like to learn more about space exploration, then why not book a talk.

Click here for details of my presentations

You can also book my workshop - "Build The Space Station" - which involves constructing a model of the ISS - usng toilet rolls, pizza trays, lollipop sticks and kitchen foil.

Click here for details of my space workshops
ISS track
 
If you are interested in arranging a presentation on space or astronomy,
contact me at info@spaceflight-uk.com
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