Monday, July 27, 2009

ISS/Shuttle passes are over in Chicago

If you are searching for ISS and Shuttle passes over Chicago, tonight's was the last one for a while. If you are an early morning person, mid August will work; if not, early September is the next time you can see the ISS in Chicago.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

ISS through a telescope

I just watched an awesome pass of the International Space Station over Chicago. I was able to catch it and follow* the ISS through a telescope at about 50x: the space station appeared as an eagle with orange solar panel wings, with a white body and a small white point source on the main axis. It was excellent, and that was at low power! Here was Tyrell's approach three years ago.

*follow in the sense of every twenty seconds moving a giant dome, followed by a german equatorial telescope in advance of the ISS and hoping I wasn't too slow.

Monday, July 06, 2009

Evening passes of the ISS visible in Chicago

There are a number of nice passes of the International Space Station visible in Chicago for the next two weeks. Take a look at Heavens-Above for the set for Chicago.

Here are the highlights for the evening passes, when they begin, how bright they are, and how high in the sky; click on the link above to get the full details. In some cases you will be able to see the ISS on successive orbits.

6 Jul -2.6 21:42:04 31
6 Jul -1.3 23:17:17 29
7 Jul -3.2 22:06:11 76
8 Jul -2.6 20:55:50 32
8 Jul -1.1 22:31:06 29
9 Jul -3.1 21:19:57 72
10 Jul -1.0 21:44:51 28
11 Jul -2.9 20:33:38 69
12 Jul -0.9 20:58:31 27

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Lunar Reconaissance Orbiter first images

The first test images are back from the LRO.

I've annotated a previous image of the moon with the location of the image: The orange markers are at the crater Hell E, which is listed in the press release as being just a few kilometers west of the image site. Hell E is listed as 10km across, so the images are just a touch to the right of that crater. Click on the image for a large original.

Credit for the LRO images are NASA/GSFC/ASU.