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Post by Chicago Astronomer Joe on Aug 30, 2009 21:59:52 GMT -6
Good ISS & Shuttle Flyover Chicago Skies on the 8th of Sept
There are a number of nice ISS/Shuttle flyovers in the next few days, but an exceptional one to be experienced on Tuesday, the 8th of September.
At 8:14 pm, the object will be low in the SW and steadily gain both altitude and brightness, when at 8:17pm - it will be very high in the SE at an incredible 81 degrees - almost overhead!!
AND....at a magnitude of -3.5 - about as bright as Venus!!
An incredible opportunity!
Enjoying the high arc, it will then glide down toward the ENE and dissapear at 8:20 pm.
It's still a week away and hopefully the weather will remain clear on this day. But, as the above graphic shows, there are a lot of less spectacular but worthy flyovers to catch. September 6th & 7th look good too.
The September 8th viewing should be better than the last bright ISS flyover of July'09:
Post by Chicago Astronomer Joe on Sept 7, 2009 12:39:32 GMT -6
ISS/Space Shuttle Observation Party Tuesday the 8th of September
Fellow Chicago Astronomer ISS/Shuttle nerds....
Tuesday, the 8th of September - the ISS/Shuttle duo will make a great overhead pass in Chicago evening skies. This one is a very special flyover.
At 8:14:57 pm - the pair will appear in the SW sky at 10° - where it will steadily zoom very high overhead in the SE at 81° at 8:17:49 - at magnitude of -3.1 (Venus magnitude territory)...and decend back down in the ENE and dissapear at 16° at 8:20:20 pm. No Earth Shadow the swallow it up and at around four minutes of viewing time...a very rare event to witness.
There will be another minor pass about an hour later, but as it will only reach an altitude of 12° - it will be a challenge.
I am organizing a viewing party tomorrow, Tuesday the 8th of September for a group orgy of ISS/Shuttle awe and enjoyment. I plan in meeting at the South Lawn of the Adler Planetarium at 7:00 pm to set up photograph equipment, and will bring along a telescope as well for some Jupiter viewing afterwards. If, for some reason parking is restricted along the drive - I will relocate the satellite party to the Old Meigs Field parking lot in Northerly Island. You may reach me at me at my Astro phone to see where we are at if you are running late. I have discussed this flyover with many of you and the anticipation is great among all of us.
The weather looks like it will be good and Chicago Clear Sky clock expects it to be absolutely clear - and this will be a memorable night for astro space geeks. I hope you all can come and join me in enjoying the evening with friends.
Post by Chicago Astronomer Joe on Sept 8, 2009 23:59:34 GMT -6
A Great Flyover Observed by the Chicago Astronomers
An incredible viewing was had by a small group of Chicago Astronomers and fans by the Adler Planetarium.
The day was iffy in terms of cloud cover and visibility, but as flyover time approached, things started to clear up and stars popped into view...although very humid, windy and misty.
But, on schedule the duo made their appearance in the SW gaining brightness with altitude. It was an eerie sight to see these two un-natural objects glide across the heavens - unblinking, very bright and steady.
The Chicago Astronomers and fans all were excited and followed the two orbiting objects...as I attempted to record the pass on camera. (I failed miserably here...as the camera's sensor has lost some of it's sensitivity and it was hard to track using video.) I should have stuck with still photos, as in 2007 the pics came out great as opposed to these - see the first pic of this thread.
I was forced in using only short exposures while I shot video...very disappointing.
But one could easily distinguish between the ISS and the Shuttle.
And here is the Video of the flyover:
After the flyover, as the duo sank behind the Adler Planetarium.... .....we took time out to observe Jupiter for a bit, using the modest kick-around 4.5" and John's 5" MAK. Winds shook the tubes, but I could kick up the mag using a 9mm quite easily with moderately clear views.
New Chicago Astronomer member Luke, studies Jupiter and it's satellites.
Fellow Chicago Astronomers and Adler Telescope facilitators Linda, John and myself.
Adler Astronomer Mark, Chicago Astronomical Society rep Audrey and myself.
It was a fulfilling and enjoyable evening with a great ISS and Shuttle pass. I hope we get more great opportunities like this soon.
Post by Chicago Astronomer Joe on Sept 9, 2009 11:08:29 GMT -6
Dr. Mark Hammergren, Staff Astronomer and Asteroid hunter at the Adler Planetarium sent me his cool capture of last night's ISS flyover - and caught them as they were sinking behind the Adler building...nice.
I like it a lot.
I took the liberty to enhance Mark's image - removing some noise & darkening the sky.
The lens flare at the upper right looks like a newly discovered comet. (The horrible lighting surrounding the Adler is criminal and ignorant...so says the Chicago Astronomer... )
It was a memorable night and thanks to Mark for sharing his ISS/Shuttle image.
Chicago Astronomer Joe Founder, Administrator and Chief Astronomer
Telescope/Observatory Docent Facilitator Adler Planetarium & Astronomy Museum
Astronomy Instructor Instituto Del Progresso/IHSCA
Astronomy Program Instructor British International School of Chicago /Lincoln Park Campus
Resident Astronomer Chicago Park District Nature Oasis/Night Out in the Parks/ 606 Trail