How to find the ISS in the sky: NASA releases a convenient mobile application

The International Space Station (ISS) makes 16 orbits around the Earth per day. Despite the height of about 400 km, it is easy to recognize thanks to the shiny solar panels that reflect the sun’s rays. It is only important to know the time of flight and raise your gaze to the sky.

The ISS is in the background of the Earth at an altitude of 400 km above the surface. Photo: NASA

There is already a website that provides information about the time the station passes over the selected point and even sends alerts by email. However, for greater convenience, NASA has launched a new, convenient Spot the Station application for mobile devices on iOS and Android. It has a number of useful functions to facilitate observations of the ISS. You can set up alerts about the approach of the station. The mobile app even uses augmented reality to facilitate the search.

Screenshots of the Spot the Station app

At the top of the display, you will see the date of the next ISS passage over your region. You can select a date and view a list of the next flights with an indication of their start and end points. Usually, the best time for observations is in the morning or evening. If it is inconvenient for you to watch early in the morning, you can deactivate the corresponding notifications in the settings.

Screenshots of the Spot the Station app

Returning to the main page, you will see 3D images of the Earth and the ISS, which show the current location of the station and its trajectory. The app also includes a two-dimensional map showing the day and night regions.

“Even after 23 years of continuous human presence aboard the International Space Station, it’s incredibly exciting to see the station when you look up at just the right moment. The orbiting laboratory that continues to provide so many unique, tangible benefits for humanity really isn’t that far out of reach. With the help of the new Spot the Station application, the possibility of observing the ISS has become even more accessible and exciting,” said Robyn Gatens, Director of the ISS program, introducing the new application.

Earlier we reported on how NASA advised to push the station out of orbit.

According to NASA

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