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Clear skies and a bright high pass will make it easy to see the ISS this evening as it crosses the Tuscarawas Valley

Mostly clear skies this evening will bring a great opportunity to view the International Space Station as it zips across east-central Ohio.

Go outside at 8:58 pm and face the northwest. That’s where the space station can be first seen this evening. It will travel nearly right overhead before finally dipping into Earth’s shadow in the east-southeast at 9:04 pm. It will be visible for just over 5 minutes here in the Tuscarawas Valley.

Use the map below as a guide to help get your bearings:

04-12-iss-map

This evening’s pass will be very bright and easy to spot. Even the kids will be able to see it with a little help.

How to Spot the ISS – What to Look For
Look for a bright ‘star’ or point of light moving very quickly across the sky. It will be moving faster than a commercial jetliner The space station has no strobe lights and it does not produce a contrail. There is no noise and it does not ‘twinkle’ or blink. Light from the station is reflected light from the sun. The station presents a fairly large point of light – much bigger and brighter than a star.

For the best results, observers should look in the direction shown at the time listed. Because of the speed of an orbiting vehicle, telescopes are not practical. However, a good pair of field binoculars may reveal some detail of the structural shape of the spacecraft.

How high is the ISS and how fast is it moving?
The International Space Station travels in orbit around Earth at a speed of 17,500 miles per hour (that’s about 5 miles per second!). This means that the Space Station orbits Earth (and sees a sunrise) once every 92 minutes! On average, the ISS orbits at about 220 miles above the Earth.

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