Spot the International Space Station from Your House with NASA’s Help

November 5, 2012, By Sanjeev Ramachandran

Have you ever sat down and watched a clear sky at night? Sometimes, if you are lucky, you can even see a meteor streak across the constellations.

Well, here’s a golden opportunity for star gazers to catch a glimpse of the International Space Station from your house; and you don’t even need a telescope to view it. The International Space Station is the third brightest object in the sky after the sun and the moon.

So if you know where and when to look for it, you can find it pretty easily. NASA has offered to help you with finding the IST from your home.

NASA’s Spot the Station service will send you an email or text message a few hours prior to the Space Station’s passing over your house. The Mission Control at NASA’s Johnson Space Centre in Houston,Texas, holds the job of determining sighting opportunities for 4,600 locations worldwide, several times a week.

The Space Station would streak across the sky like a fast-moving plane, and is visible clearly on clear nights. If your specific city or town isn’t in the list provided by NASA, then pick a locality which is near to you, as the orbiting laboratory can viewed from a long distance around each of the locations.

If you are interested in finding out more about the International Space Station and the missions involved, then head over to the space station mission pages. NASA’s notification services will notify you of the “good” sighting opportunities. Sightings that are high enough in the sky at about 40 degrees or more and that lasts long enough for you to get the best view of the Space Station is regarded as “good”.

The sightings can vary, depending on the station’s orbit, from once or twice a week to once or twice a month. There’s a list of all the possible space station sightings available at the Johnson Space Center.

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