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Astronomy Pic of the Day

  1. Jun 4, 2008 #1
    The astronomy picture of the day is pretty neat today it was taken on may 31st (saturday)
    Shows a few planets and the path of the International Space Station.

    I live in Brockville, Ontario outside of town so the stars at night are pretty clear, some friends and I were out there and we saw a sattelite stream across the sky, we know it was not a meteoride because it was too slow and did not burn out it just kept going.

    Anyways after seeing the picture i am now wondering if it was the international space station we saw instead of a sattelite.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 4, 2008 #2

    DaveC426913

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    It's likely too late now because they don't keep back records for long*** but, in the future if you see a satellite and are wondering what it is, go to Heavens Above. Plug in your coords and check time and location.

    Even better is to us HA to predict a pass-over and then go out and observe it. I've done this numerous times with both the ISS and the quite spectacular Iridium Flares.

    If you are with some friends and you time it right, you could wow the socks off them (and possibly have them worship you as a god).

    ***[EDIT: Waitaminnit, yes they do, it just requires a bit of hunting around]
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2008
  4. Jun 4, 2008 #3

    DaveC426913

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    BTW, there's a couple of Iridium flares due over Brockville tonight, if you happen to have clear skies.

    If you were on Cedar St. in Brockville's west end at 10:34 tonight and you looked due West at about 20 degrees high in the sky (about a hand's width above the horizon, you might see it.)

    There's another one at 11:50 but you'd have to drive all the way up the road to the Prescott Golf Club to see it. It'll be in the east sky and a good bit higher in the sky (40 degrees or 2 hand widths). Higher in the sky makes for better viewing, especially in urban areas.
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2008
  5. Jun 4, 2008 #4

    russ_watters

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    If you can give me some more specifics (date and time, what direction you were looking, and how high the object was), I can have a look at what Starry Night showed for that time/place.
     
  6. Jun 5, 2008 #5
    According to google maps latitude longitude popup http://www.gorissen.info/Pierre/maps/googleMapLocation.php
    by clicking around the area where my house should be i get lat. 44.665479 and long.
    -75.652199 now direction and time i was looking in the sky are uncertain, probably around 1 and 2 am and just generally looking upwards.

    Thanks for the link to Heavens Above i wasnt aware of that site i am going to create an acount ive been looking for something like that for a while. Hopefully friday or saturday night this weekend i will be able to do some stargazing if the bad weather clears up.
     
  7. Jun 5, 2008 #6

    DaveC426913

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    Huh. I did not know about this feature. I was doing it the manual way. Plug lat/long numbers into Google Maps on a trial and error basis until it's centred where I want it.


    Saaaay... why don't I see a house at that location? That's in the middle of a field!

    Are you sure you don't mean 44.663079 N 75.651499W ?
     
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2008
  8. Jun 5, 2008 #7
    close I didnt use the hybrid image to pinpoint the actual house I didnt even think of that, just clicked in the general area. My house is 3 houses down the road to the west.

    44.660484 -75.655423 those are the coords I cant seem to get it to pop up nicely on a google maps like you did tho whenever I type in the coords it jsut doenst seem to work.
     
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2008
  9. Jun 5, 2008 #8

    russ_watters

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    Starry Night actually has your city, so I don't need the lat and long. Unless I missed it, you didn't say what night you were out, but here are a couple of possibilities:

    May 31, 12:32 AM (Fri night/Sat morn): It went from W to SE (right to left in the sky) at a max elevation of about 40 degrees when it was near due south.

    June 1, 12:56 AM: W to S, max elevation 15 degrees.

    June 2 it barely broke the horizon and was probably not visible.

    June 3 it did not break the horizon.

    It wasn't especially bright at any of those times, but that late at night, no satellite would be, so it was quite possible you saw it if you were out at that time. I think those times are in your local daylight savings time, btw.
     
  10. Jun 6, 2008 #9

    DaveC426913

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    There's a "link to this page" link on the right:

    http://maps.google.ca/maps?f=q&hl=e...594&spn=0.002961,0.004678&t=h&z=18&iwloc=addr

    P.S. Wave!
     
  11. Jun 8, 2008 #10
    ok so according to heavens above the ISS is supposed to pass by tonight between 9:30 and 9:34 start in the West alt. 10 peak SW at alt. 18 then finish in the west at alt 10 magnitude of 2.0

    how do i work these altitudes out I am thinking it might be too low in the sky to actually see.
     
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