Antares Cygnus visibility map. Credit: Orbital ATK

East Coast Alert: Spectacular Night Launch To The Space Station

If you live along the East Coast, it’s your lucky night. You just might have a ringside seat for a spectacular night launch to the space station. Orbital ATK’s upgraded Antares rocket will lift off at 7:40 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility on Virginia coast. Assuming good weather, Antares will dispatch a Cygnus cargo ship to…
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Credit: Bob King

Falling Leaves And The Perpetually Falling Space Station

October. Leaves are turning and falling. Autumn winds pluck them from the trees and send them bouncing down downtown sidewalks. Gravity is the reason leaves fall down rather than up. Like a leaf forever falling, the International Space Station (ISS) spends every second descending toward Earth. With leaves, the ground gets in the way and they come to…
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A model of the Shenzhou-9 manned spacecraft ( R) docking with the orbiting Tiangong-1 space lab module (L). © Jason Lee / Reuters

See China’s Tiangong-1 Space Station Before It’s No More

China’s first space station, Tiangong-1 or Heavenly Palace, is out of control and doomed to fall to Earth in the second half of 2017. Should you worry? Not really. Two-thirds of the planet is covered in water and much of the remainder is either uninhabited or thinly so, making the chance of any one individual being…
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ISS. Credit: NASA

Weekend Space Station Extravaganza

Many of us have seen the the International Space Station (ISS) pass overhead at night. Maybe once a night. How would you like to see it five times in in the span of one evening? This weekend, you’ll have your chance. Passes starts a typical 6-minute run with an appearance low in the western sky traveling…
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ISS Milky WayS_FEA

Can Astronauts See Stars From The Space Station? The Moon?

An astronaut on board the International Space Station (ISS) took this wide-angle photograph of Earth’s night lights while looking out over the remote reaches of the central equatorial Pacific Ocean.  At the time, the ISS was passing over the island nation of Kiribati about 1,600 miles (2600 kilometers) south of Hawaii. In this view, we look in…
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