Spot the International Space Station

By: Mallory Brooke
By: Mallory Brooke

The short nights of summer allow for many opportunities to see the International Space Station as it orbits the Earth.

The best time to catch a glimpse of the International Space Station starts on Thursday. Prime viewing hours are between 45 and 90 minutes before sunrise or after sunset.

The duration of the view depends on the angle above the horizon at which a person is watching. If it passes below 20 degrees, the station will not get much brighter than a moderate star and only last for a minute or two. For ideal viewing, the station would have to pass above 45 degrees, leaving about five minutes to see the station.

According to NASA's SkyWatch, the two best opportunities to view the station from Harrisonburg are July 18 at 5:23 a.m. and July 20 at 4:35 a.m. based on maximum elevation in the sky.

You can visit NASA's SkyWatch website for updated schedules on viewings in your area. is happy to provide a forum for commenting and discussion. Please respect and abide by the house rules:

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