Watch the Skies

I just got back from a park near here. I stood out in the middle of a dark softball field and watched the International Space Station (ISS) fly over.

It looked like a bright star, but it was moving. If I hadn’t known what it was, I might have assumed it was a high-flying jet. But it was too high, and too bright, to be a jet. The sun had set more than an hour before. The ISS, orbiting 220 miles above the earth, could still catch sunlight.

I knew where and when to watch thanks to NASA’s ISS tracker site, and this Space Fellowship article, which I found thanks to Slashdot.

The marathon of space station flybys won’t stop until mid-to-late July (depending on your location). That gives space shuttle Endeavour, currently scheduled to launch on July 11th, time to reach the space station and join the show. As the shuttle approaches station for docking, many observers will witness a memorable double flyby — Endeavour and the ISS sailing side by side across the starry night sky.

So, watch the skies, and remember to wave.