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Spot the space station over your backyard with new NASA service

Date:
November 7, 2012
Source:
NASA
Summary:
On the 12th anniversary of crews continuously living and working aboard the International Space Station, NASA announced Nov. 2 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.

Earth framing the International Space Station in May 2010 following undocking of Atlantis during the STS-132 mission.
Credit: NASA

On the 12th anniversary of crews continuously living and working aboard the International Space Station, NASA announced Nov. 2 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 station.

To sign up for "Spot the Station," visit: http://spotthestation.nasa.gov

For information about the International Space Station and a full list of sightings, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/station


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by NASA. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

NASA. "Spot the space station over your backyard with new NASA service." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 7 November 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121107102030.htm>.
NASA. (2012, November 7). Spot the space station over your backyard with new NASA service. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121107102030.htm
NASA. "Spot the space station over your backyard with new NASA service." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121107102030.htm (accessed September 17, 2014).

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