[amsat-bb] New NASA Service: Spot the ISS

Clint Bradford clintbrad4d at earthlink.net
Fri Nov 2 09:37:27 PDT 2012


WASHINGTON -- On the 12th anniversary of crews continuously living and 
working aboard the International Space Station, NASA announced Friday 
a new service to help people see the orbiting laboratory when it 
passes overhead. "Spot the Station" will send an email or text 
message to those who sign up for the service a few hours before they 
will be able to see the space station. 

"It's really remarkable to see the space station fly overhead and to 
realize humans built an orbital complex that can be spotted from 
Earth by almost anyone looking up at just the right moment," said 
William Gerstenmaier, NASA's associate administrator for human 
exploration and operations. "We're accomplishing science on the space 
station that is helping to improve life on Earth and paving the way 
for future exploration of deep space." 

When the space station is visible -- typically at dawn and dusk -- it 
is the brightest object in the night sky, other than the moon. On a 
clear night, the station is visible as a fast moving point of light, 
similar in size and brightness to the planet Venus. "Spot the 
Station" users will have the options to receive alerts about morning, 
evening or both types of sightings. 

The International Space Station's trajectory passes over more than 90 
percent of Earth's population. The service is designed to only notify 
users of passes that are high enough in the sky to be easily visible 
over trees, buildings and other objects on the horizon. NASA's 
Johnson Space Center calculates the sighting information several 
times a week for more than 4,600 locations worldwide, all of which 
are available on "Spot the Station." 

Nov. 2 marks 12 years of continuous human habitation of the space 

To sign up for "Spot the Station," visit: 


For information about the International Space Station and a full list 
of sightings, visit: 



Clint Bradford, K6LCS

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