Thursday, April 25, 2013

See the Space Station tonight + a bonus of planets

 Chasing the ISS
We are in luck again as the International Space Station will be passing over our skies in Israel. The angle with the Sun is just right,  so that  even though it is way past sunset down here on the surface of the Earth, it is still sunny 200 miles up by the space station.  The ISS will reflect the sunlight as it passes, appearing like a very bright star slowly moving across the sky.

It will rise from the northwest horizon at  8:57 appearing like a very bright star. It will be hard to miss, as it will be brighter than any other star. The space station will head pretty much to a point overhead. where it will abruptly disappear 3 minutes later. This is because it will no longer be in the sunlight as it passes into the shadow of the Earth over our heads.
While you are out do notice the full Moon rising low in the east. As a bonus, notice the bright star to the lower left of the moon which is actually the planet Saturn! (For extra credit, you can also find Jupiter, as the brightest "star" hanging out in the west.)
For more, including details on the secret eclipse tonight, see the previous post.


  1. You just made my husband so happy. He has said "Kewl!" about 20 times. He has always loved space and astronomy; and finding your message just about 10 minutes before the occurrence allowed us to get up to the observation platform (brand new!) here in Neve Daniel, and to watch the space station pass. I am quite fond of people who help me to make my husband so happy. Todah, and Shabbat shalom!

  2. So cool! Thank you so much for that heads-up...literally. I stood outside, gazing heavenward in wonderment, and for just a few moments, felt infinitesimal and infinite at the same time.