Periodically the ISS, International Space Station orbits the Earth over my part of the world, south of Kansas City Missouri (38.905oN : 94.355oW). The ISS orbits the Earth from west to east so whenever a flyover happens I set up my camera in order to catch the ISS as it rises above the horizon through as much of its passage as my camera field of view is able to capture. I typically use the camera with the lens at 18mm and once in a while, like this evening, I will use a 27mm fish-eye lens.
Last evening the ISS rose up from the northwest horizon passing to the west of the stars making the zig-zag pattern of Cassiopeia the Queen. It reached its maximum magnitude of around -3 to -4 before quickly fading out nearly directly overhead.
Then this evening with a bright waxing gibbous Moon and a hazy sky from nearby brush fires (winds today were 30 mph or more, temperature hit 70o and humidity was very low), the ISS came up from the northwest past the chimney on my house to a little south of Polaris reaching around -2 in apparent magnitude. This was almost a 6-minute flyover and the ISS stayed bright nearly to the southeastern horizon. I lost sight of it in the trees.
Read a little more about taking pictures of the ISS and Iridium Satellite Flares in a previous posting.
Click here to go to the Qué tal in the Current Skies web site for more observing information for this month.