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Night Sky

JamesM
Grafter
Posts: 1,103
Registered: 24-06-2009

Night Sky

ABout 6 months ago I was outside having a cig and I saw a light in the sky moving rather slowly, I took it to be one of those candles with a parachute. I have seen it a few times over the last few months, no flashing lights just one constant light. Then on Saturday I was at a party and I was telling my cousin about it, then about an hour later there it was. So the next night I watched for it so I could see the time it passed over. bang on 11:30 PM.
I live near Sheffield and if I stand in my back garden, the light comes directly from west to east at 11:30 PM passing through the LEO constellation. So last night I made an effort to be outside at 11:30 PM to watch it, but this time it came from South to North. I remembered the first time I saw it, this is the direction it came from.
I know this is not E.T. but am just wondering if anyone else has seen this and if it is a spy drone or something because it is too low to be a satellite.
14 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 16,848
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Registered: 06-11-2007

Re: Night Sky

It may well be the International Space Station.....
You can get the dates and times of passes from this site.....
http://iss.astroviewer.net/observation.php
In the box on the right.... "change location".....
Grab and drag the map until the red + is over the uk....... Enlarge the map... and move it so that the + is over sheffield... ( approx postion 1 25` 42" W    53 22`  60" N )...  Name the location then..  Click on "Apply new location"....

Below you will get the next few days passes.....
click on the arrow on the left  and you will get a map of the uk. with Sheffield as the view point.... and the track of the ISS in RED in the main circle.... this is the "visible pass"...
Best day and time this week is the 15th... at 22:37 to 22:43    Six whole minutes !    assuming a clear and cloudless sky......


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Re: Night Sky

Not the Tardis, then?
Wink

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JamesM
Grafter
Posts: 1,103
Registered: 24-06-2009

Re: Night Sky

Thanks shutter, that is a great website, the best thing about being in a forum is for the things you find out that you had no idea existed. I will look out for the ISS tomorrow night, hopefully it will be clear. I had french windows fitted at the back of my house a few months back so it is easier to take my telescope in and out, so I am looking forward to a few clear warm nights this summer.
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,307
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Registered: 08-01-2008

Re: Night Sky

Is that an Astronomical Telescope?  I'd like to get one but they seem very expensive.  Grin
Have a read here also: http://community.plus.net/forum/index.php/topic,108938.0.html
Call me 'w23'
At any given moment in the universe many things happen. Coincidence is a matter of how close these events are in space, time and relationship.
Opinions expressed in forum posts are those of the poster, others may have different views.
JamesM
Grafter
Posts: 1,103
Registered: 24-06-2009

Re: Night Sky

This is the one I have,

Community Veteran
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Re: Night Sky

Can you take pictures with it?  I've 'spotted the station' just a couple of times recently, would like to see a closer view (but not the professional images already all over the web), if you can get a picture would you post it here?
Call me 'w23'
At any given moment in the universe many things happen. Coincidence is a matter of how close these events are in space, time and relationship.
Opinions expressed in forum posts are those of the poster, others may have different views.
JamesM
Grafter
Posts: 1,103
Registered: 24-06-2009

Re: Night Sky

I have a canon camera w23, but I haven't got around to buying the adapter that will allow me to use the telescope as a lens yet  Sad
Community Veteran
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Re: Night Sky

What's W23 ?
JamesM
Grafter
Posts: 1,103
Registered: 24-06-2009

Re: Night Sky

A user name gleneagles, I missed the apostrophe between camera and w23.
Community Veteran
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Registered: 06-11-2007

Re: Night Sky

If you have a VHF (ham-type) communications receiver, you MAY be able to catch some transmissions......
Frequencies
Worldwide downlink for voice 145.80
Worldwide packet uplink/downlink 145.825
Region 1 voice uplink 145.20
Region 2 and 3 voice uplink 144.49
Worldwide uplink for cross band voice repeater
437.80
Worldwide SSTV downlink
145.800
Callsigns for the ISS
Joe Acaba KE5DAR
Aki Hoshide KE5DNI
Yuri Malenchenko RK3DUP
Gennady Padalka RN3DT
Sergei Revin RN3BS
Suni Williams KD5PLB
Russian callsigns RS0ISS, RZ3DZR
U.S.A. callsign NA1SS
German callsign DP0ISS
Packet station mailbox callsign RS0ISS-11
Packet station keyboard callsign RS0ISS-3
Packet Digipeater ARISS
For more information on the procedures used to contact the international space station, please visit the ARISS Web site.
Not sure if the callsigns on there are "current" users...
**********************************************************************************************************************************************************************************
Two sites I have mentioned before ( recently )..... may also be of interest....
http://iss.astroviewer.net/
http://www.isstracker.com/
JamesM
Grafter
Posts: 1,103
Registered: 24-06-2009

Re: Night Sky

I haven't had a clear sky since I mentioned this so I havent been able to see the light again, but I was talking to my mate in Belfast the other night and he says there is quite a few people who took photos in Ireland wondering what the light was. Apparently they are UAV's for the G8 meeting that is in Ireland at the momment.
JamesM
Grafter
Posts: 1,103
Registered: 24-06-2009

Re: Night Sky

I have been seeing these lights more regularly now, Sunday night at about 10:30 PM, I saw one going South to North, then another crossed near it going North to South, then last night at about 11:30 PM I saw one going SW to NE and another going North to South. They are virtually straight up in the sky at 90 degrees above the horizon, they are as bright as a star, move as fast as a plane but they have no flashing lights and make no sound. They have to be UAV's, but even on a clear night I can follow one and then it just fades away as though it is travelling in a horizontal line, then starts to climb and disappears.
Community Veteran
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Registered: 30-08-2007

Re: Night Sky

You could clear this up with this NASA page where you can supply your home coordinates and receive emails telling you where and when you should the ISS.:
http://spotthestation.nasa.gov/
I've been getting these mails for some time. At times they come in one or more a day. For the last month or so very few have been received. The last few days there has been a serious increase in the possible views, which seems to coincide with your current increase of the number of times your "lights" have appeared <it most likely is the ISS>  
Its all down to the inclination of the ISS orbit whether it can be seen from the UK. Anyway you can insert your own town (or nearest anyway)
This info was posted on this forum a while ago.
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Community Veteran
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Registered: 06-11-2007

Re: Night Sky

see my post number 1  for the linky.....
according to my position in Portsmouth... I should have been  able to see the ISS at about 02:20 to 02:23 this morning... with a good "bright" shiny light... assuming the cloudless sky .... of course...
and again at 03:53 to 04:00..... only half as "bright" tomorrow morning at 01:33 to 01:34  However at 03:06 to 03:11 it will be back to max brightness again  and again at 04:41 to 0448....
Won`t stay up though.!... need my beauty sleep...!...