Blog Archives

ISS Over Essex (and the UK) – February 2014

The International Space Station (ISS) will be making night-time passes over southern England during December, and so you can see the ISS from Essex as it orbits the Earth above you.

The ISS is a noticeably bright moving object and is quite easy to spot – you just need to know when and where to look up! If you have a camera which can take a long exposure, you can also try taking a photograph.

You can find the viewing times of ISS flybys over Essex here, or you can click the “ISS Flyby Information” link in the right-hand menu.

The ISS appears in the sky as a bright point object moving across the sky, usually taking 3 or 4 minutes to pass over. The space station isn’t emitting light – you are seeing the station’s surfaces reflect sunlight from orbit as it passes over your location.

Heavens Above is another website which allows you input your location details and find out about the ISS and other satellites passing over your skies. There are also various Android and Iphone apps that will alert you to ISS passes – ISS Detector is recommended.

Also, you can follow us on Facebook and Twitter for further updates.

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January 2014 Lecture Meeting -“US Spaceflight: The Next Step”

Our first lecture of 2014 will be given by Gary Auker of e2v, who will be talking about “US Spaceflight: The Next Step”.

With the Space Shuttle retired and a new generation of spacecraft being developed, what will the future hold for NASA’s programme of space exporation?

The public meeting takes place at the Henry Dixon Hall, Rivenhall End on Wednesday 15th January. Doors open at 7.30pm for an 8pm start. £2 for members, £3 for non-members. For further information, see the Events page.

ISS Over Essex (and the UK) – December 2013

The International Space Station (ISS) will be making night-time passes over southern England during December, and so you can see the ISS from Essex as it orbits the Earth above you.

The ISS is a noticeably bright moving object and is quite easy to spot – you just need to know when and where to look up! If you have a camera which can take a long exposure, you can also try taking a photograph.

You can find the viewing times of ISS flybys over Essex here, or you can click the “ISS Flyby Information” link in the right-hand menu.

The ISS appears in the sky as a bright point object moving across the sky, usually taking 3 or 4 minutes to pass over. The space station isn’t emitting light – you are seeing the station’s surfaces reflect sunlight from orbit as it passes over your location.

Heavens Above is another website which allows you input your location details and find out about the ISS and other satellites passing over your skies. There are also various Android and Iphone apps that will alert you to ISS passes – ISS Detector is recommended.

Also, you can follow us on Facebook and Twitter for further updates.

ISS Over Essex (and the UK) – October 2013

The International Space Station (ISS) will be making night-time passes over southern England during October, and so you can see the ISS from Essex as it orbits the Earth above you.

The ISS is a noticeably bright moving object and is quite easy to spot – you just need to know when and where to look up! If you have a camera which can take a long exposure, you can also try taking a photograph.

You can find the viewing times of ISS flybys over Essex here, or you can click the “ISS Flyby Information” link in the right-hand menu.

The ISS appears in the sky as a bright point object moving across the sky, usually taking 3 or 4 minutes to pass over. The space station isn’t emitting light – you are seeing the station’s surfaces reflect sunlight from orbit as it passes over your location.

Heavens Above is another website which allows you input your location details and find out about the ISS and other satellites passing over your skies. There are also various Android and Iphone apps that will alert you to ISS passes – ISS Detector is recommended.

Also, you can follow us on Facebook and Twitter for further updates.

 

ISS Over Essex (and the UK) – August 2013

The International Space Station (ISS) will be making night-time passes over southern England during June, and so you can see the ISS from Essex as it orbits the Earth above you.

The ISS is now a noticeably bright moving object and is quite easy to spot – you just need to know when and where to look up! If you have a camera which can take a long exposure, you can also try taking a photograph.

You can find the viewing times of ISS flybys over Essex here, or you can click the “ISS Flyby Information” link in the right-hand menu.

The ISS appears in the sky as a bright point object moving across the sky, usually taking 3 or 4 minutes to pass over. The space station isn’t emitting light – you are seeing the station’s surfaces reflect sunlight from orbit as it passes over your location.

Heavens Above is another website which allows you input your location details and find out about the ISS and other satellites passing over your skies. There are also various Android and Iphone apps that will alert you to ISS passes – ISS Detector is recommended.

Also, you can follow us on Facebook and Twitter for further updates.

July 2013 Lecture Meeting – “The Space Shuttle & ISS”

Our speaker this month is Andrew Green who will talking about “The Space Shuttle and ISS”.

The talk will look at the Space Shuttle, its development, history, accidents and Andy’s own personal reflection of reporting on two missions.

He will also look at how the International Space Station was developed and built.

Andy is a Fellow of both the Royal Astronomical Society and British Interplanetary Society and is the director of StarDome Astronomy & Astronautics – a lecturing, consulting and mobile planetarium service educating people across the country about astronomy and space.

The public meeting takes place at the Henry Dixon Hall, Rivenhall End on Wednesday 17th July. Doors open at 7.30pm for an 8pm start. For further information, see the Events page.

Spacecraft Modelmaking: Galileo

The Galileo spacecraft was launched on 18th October 1989 aboard the Space Shuttle Atlantis and, after a six year journey, arrived at Jupiter in December of 1995 to begin its orbital tour of the planet and its moons.

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Galileo spent over 14 years in service at Jupiter, providing us with high resolution data about the planet. Via a detachable probe that descended into Jupiter’s atmosphere, the planet’s composition was directly measured for the first time. The structure of Jupiter’s magnetosphere was also mapped.

Galileo discovered that Jupiter’s faint ring system consists of dust from impacts on the four Jovian moons. Volcanism on Io was imaged, as well as its interaction with Jupiter’s atmosphere. The theory of a liquid subsurface ocean under the ice world of Europa was further bolstered by data collected by Galileo and similar indicators were found to suggest the same occuring under the surface of Ganymede and Callisto.

In 1994, Galileo also observed the collision of Comet Shoemaker–Levy 9.

On 21st September 2003, Galileo’s mission was terminated by sending the space craft into Jupiter’s atmosphere at a speed of 50 km/s. This decision was made so that there was no chance of Galileo crashing and contaminating any of Jupiter’s moons.

galileoIMG_1012

This model of Galileo was scratch built using modelling plastic styrene sheets and rods, from plans originally designed for paper models but modified for use with plastics. The high gain antenna on the real spacecraft never fully opened but on the model it is shown open to give the impression of it fully functional.galileoIMG_1015galileoIMG_1014galileoIMG_1013

It is a 1/45th scale model and is 150mm long (the real spacecraft weighing about 5000 lbs and being about the size of a small car).

The model, built by Terry Regan, has been composited here (by Paul Kemp) with a NASA/JPL imagery of Jupiter.

Terry Regan is the Chief Spacecraft Model Builder for the Institute of Interstellar Studies, and is currently building a model of the Daedalus spacecraft for the British Interplanetary Society.

ISS Over Essex (and the UK) – June 2013

UPDATE – The ATV4 supply craft “Albert Einstein” launched on the 5th June, and you should be able to spot that too as it catches up to the ISS before docking. Viewing times are in the link below.

The International Space Station (ISS) will be making night-time passes over southern England during June, and so you can see the ISS from Essex as it orbits the Earth above you.

The ISS is now a noticeably bright moving object and is quite easy to spot – you just need to know when and where to look up! If you have a camera which can take a long exposure, you can also try taking a photograph.

You can find the viewing times of ISS flybys over Essex here, or you can click the “ISS Flyby Information” link in the right-hand menu.

The ISS appears in the sky as a bright point object moving across the sky, usually taking 3 or 4 minutes to pass over. The space station isn’t emitting light – you are seeing the station’s surfaces reflect sunlight from orbit as it passes over your location.

Heavens Above is another website which allows you input your location details and find out about the ISS and other satellites passing over your skies. There are also various Android and Iphone apps that will alert you to ISS passes – ISS Detector is recommended.

Also, you can follow us on Facebook and Twitter for further updates.

ISS Over Essex (and the UK) – April 2013

The International Space Station (ISS) will be passing over southern England during the evenings in April, and you can see it from Essex as it orbits the Earth above you.

Image: David Warrington

The ISS is a noticeably bright moving object and is fairly easy to spot, you just need to know when and where to look up!

You can find the viewing times of ISS flybys over Essex here, or you can click the “ISS Flyby Information” link in the right-hand menu.

It appears as a bright point object moving across the sky, usually taking 2 or 3 minutes to pass over. The space station isn’t emitting light – you are seeing it reflect sunlight from orbit as it passes over your location.

If you have a camera and tripod which can take a long exposure, you can also try taking a photograph.

Heavens Above is another website which allows you input your location details and find out about the ISS and other satellites passing over your skies. There are also various Android and Iphone apps that will alert you to ISS passes.

ISS Over Essex – February 2013

The International Space Station (ISS) will be making some visible passes during the evenings in mid-February and you’ll be able to see the space station over Essex as it orbits the Earth above you.

Image: David Warrington

The ISS is a noticeably bright object and is fairly easy to spot, you just need to know when and where to look up!

It appears as a bright point object moving across the sky, usually taking 2 or 3 minutes to move across the sky. The space station isn’t emitting light – you are seeing it reflect sunlight from orbit as it passes over your location.

You can find the viewing times of ISS flybys over Essex here, or you can click the “ISS Flyby Information” link in the right-hand menu.

Heavens Above is another website which allows you input your location details and find out about the ISS and other satellites passing over your skies. There are also various Android and Iphone apps that will alert you to ISS passes.

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