Stargazing at Olde Beau
Click on a picture to view sighting times and locations from Olde Beau
One of the most wonderful things about being in Olde Beau in the fall of the year is the brightness of the stars in the night sky. In addition to being able to spot the planets and meteor showers, we can observe our International Space Station as it makes its way across the sky.
The space station looks like an airplane or very bright star moving across the sky except it doesn’t have flashing lights or change direction.
It will also be moving considerably faster than a typical airplane (it flies at 17,500 miles per hour).
NASA maintains a website called Spot the Station https://spotthestation.nasa.gov
You can go on the site and register to be informed when the station can be viewed in our area.
Our area is designated as follows:
City: Blue Ridge Parkway
There are instructions given on the site to help locate the sighting. The chart below gives sighting times for our area through November 6. All sightings will occur within a few hours before or after sunrise or sunset. The sun reflects off the space station and contrasts against the darker sky.
Visible is the maximum time period the space station is visible before crossing back below the horizon.
Maximum Height is measured in degrees. It represents the height of the station from horizon in the night sky. The horizon is at zero degrees and directly overhead is ninety degrees.
Appears is the location in the sky where the station will be visible first. This value is also measured in degrees from the horizon – N is north, WNW is west by northwest and so on.
Disappears represents where in the night sky the International Space Station will leave your field of view.
It is an amazing sight and interesting to see what our space program has developed and to imagine what the future could bring us.