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ISS Flyover

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#1 skysoldier173abn

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Posted 11 September 2019 - 08:08 AM

I’ve been making it a habit to wake up early to observe since the moon is a mini sun. What is it, -26 magnitude? I digress...
Sensing it was time to get ready for work I put the scope inside and as I’m walking away my NightSky app alerts me the ISS is about to flyover. I want to see what that looks like but could I actually catch it? I had to try. Now I drag the scope back outside 🙄
Using the app I followed its path until it entered Ursa Major right in the bucket of the Big Dipper. Aiming my scope to a star I try to narrow the location more because I’m noticing this is moving quite fast and it’s relatively small. Looking through finder scope I barely see two stars at 7 o-clock. I check the app and the ISS flys right through the triangle it makes. Using 40mm for the widest view possible I wait for the ISS, tracking on my app until it gets close to the Big D (sorry couldn’t resist). I look through the eyepiece and wait. After 30 seconds or so, I see a white hot dot travel from right to left (using a reflector), not as fast as a meteor but too fast to enjoy anything 😂 still exhilarating and the view was probably 1 second maybe even less. How many of you new guys use a Push-To and catch the ISS? Try it out, it’s fun.

Edited by skysoldier173abn, 11 September 2019 - 08:14 AM.


#2 M11Mike

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Posted 11 September 2019 - 08:20 AM

It's quite the sight, even visually.  Nice in binos.

 

M11Mike



#3 skysoldier173abn

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Posted 11 September 2019 - 08:58 AM

Debated using binos. Wasn’t sure if I could hold steady enough. I’ll try again with those.



#4 wrvond

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Posted 11 September 2019 - 09:17 AM

Congratulations!

I remember somebody posting a photo on here of the ISS transiting the sun. Very striking.

I'd love to catch it with enough magnification to see it's shape.


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#5 astro_1

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Posted 11 September 2019 - 10:10 AM

I have been trying to capture the ISS in one form or another. Either a solar or lunar transient, someday direct tracking. Location, time and weather are the main variables that all need to come together to be successful.

 

And that finally happened for me on Aug 17 this year 2019. And the center track line was only 2 miles from home.

 

I used my ES 80mm refractor and ZWO ASI120MM. and proper filter. I had my resolution to high so only captured at 29fps, could of used a higher frame rate, but here is a composite image of 19 frames. 

I was excited!

 

ISS_transient_composite_3_optimized.png


Edited by astro_1, 11 September 2019 - 10:11 AM.

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#6 skysoldier173abn

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Posted 11 September 2019 - 10:53 AM

Nice capture of the silhouette! Kudos!



#7 hiMike

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Posted 11 September 2019 - 03:41 PM

Using my laser finder I can usually line up where I think it will be in a couple seconds and then hop over to my EP. Never seen solar panels like some of the people here, but its still wild. Technique obviously works for sattelites as well. I can usually get 3 or 4 passes before they fade out of sight.


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#8 SamplingNature

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Posted 11 September 2019 - 10:28 PM

The picture looks like a squadron of TIE Fighters!
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#9 Waddensky

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 12:28 AM

I once succeeded in tracking the ISS for a while using my dob at 48x. I could easily discern the solar panels and general shape of the station. Other than that, ISS is best enjoyed with the naked eye or binoculars.
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#10 skysoldier173abn

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Posted 12 September 2019 - 07:48 AM

Nice job at 48x. Next time I’ll try ~50x if I can.


Edited by skysoldier173abn, 12 September 2019 - 07:48 AM.


#11 Dave Mitsky

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Posted 13 September 2019 - 01:25 PM

I’ve been making it a habit to wake up early to observe since the moon is a mini sun. What is it, -26 magnitude?

The Moon has a peak apparent magnitude of -12.9.  The Sun shines at magnitude -26.7.

 

I've tracked the ISS many times at moderately low power with alt-azimuth refractors and Dobs.  It's easier to follow during passes when its course is more horizontal than vertical.  Detail is a bit easier to see as the ISS begins to fade in brightness.

 

Dave Mitsky 


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#12 skysoldier173abn

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Posted 13 September 2019 - 01:42 PM

Thanks Dave for the clarification. Hahahaha guess I switched some values around. Still learning and this was a good chuckle

#13 clintmk89

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Posted 17 September 2019 - 07:29 AM

I love seeing the ISS with binos but haven’t tried with a scope before. Definitely gonna try once it cools down outside!

Nice tip on best type of passes to view on Dave, hadn’t thought of it being easier/harder for a specific angle of passing before.


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