Live near DC? Be sure to check out the sky at 10:11 pm tonight.



PRESS RELEASE from National Capital Astronomers


Friday evening, June 21st, the International Space Station will fly high above the National Capital area, very likely becoming the brightest object in the sky, except the Moon. Weather permitting, the space station should be easily seen using just the naked eye. Even if numerous clouds are present, the station is now so bright that she can be dramatic between clouds, or behind light cloud.

ISS will rise between the WNW and the northwest about 10:11 pm EDT, moving up and slightly to the left. About 4 minutes later, very high in the southwest, she will culminate at about 68 degrees over azimuth 219. About 2 seconds later, ISS will pass about 1 degree above the very bright star, Arcturus, alpha Bootis. About 42 seconds later, she will pass about 20 degrees above the Moon in the SSE, being about 47 degrees altitude above azimuth 157 degrees. About 14 seconds later, ISS will disappear into the shadow of the Earth, being about 40 degrees above 151 degrees. 

It is not possible to give the exact time of the passage, but there is an excellent chance that these times are within just a very few minutes of the actual flyover. 

ISS will appear as a bright moving point, perhaps similar in appearance to a distant airliner. Very distant, as she will come no closer than 279 miles, and will be moving 5 miles per second.
Credit is due to the Flight Dynamics Office of the Johnson Space Center for supplying data used in producing these indications of visibility.