Space sta­tion will make bright pass on Wed­nes­day

Honolulu Star-Advertiser - - LOCAL - Star-Ad­ver­tiser staff

The In­ter­na­tional Space Sta­tion will put in a spec­tac­u­lar ap­pear­ance over Hawaii skies on Wed­nes­day morn­ing, weather per­mit­ting. The space sta­tion will rise in the north­west about 6:42 a.m. and climb straight up. About a minute later, it will skim the bot­tom of the Big Dip­per.

At 6:45 a.m., it will pass near the star Arc­turus, aka Hokule‘a, which will be very near the top of the sky.

It will then de­scend to­ward the south­east, pass­ing to the left of Jupiter, Mars and the con­stel­la­tion Scor­pius.

Saturn and Mer­cury will be low in the south­east­ern sky and the South­ern Cross will be vis­i­ble over the ocean in the south. To the left of the South­ern Cross is the star Al­pha Cen­tauri, the clos­est to ours at a dis­tance of 4.3 light-years.

The space sta­tion will then dis­ap­pear into the Earth’s shadow about 6:48 a.m. The next bright evening pass will hap­pen Satur­day, when the space sta­tion will rise in the south and brush the south­east­ern hori­zon. Just be­fore

7:04 p.m., it will pass di­rectly above the star Sir­ius and be­low Orion.

Sir­ius is the bright­est star in the sky, with an ap­par­ent mag­ni­tude of mi­nus 1.46. The space sta­tion will be brighter at mi­nus 2.3. Wed­nes­day’s pass will be brighter still at mi­nus 3.8.

Or­bit­ing at 17,150 mph at an alti­tude of 254 miles, the space sta­tion is vis­i­ble just af­ter dusk and just be­fore dawn when it is il­lu­mi­nated by the sun against the darker sky.

Aboard are NASA as­tro­nauts Joe Acaba, Mark Vande Hei and Scott Tin­gle; Rus­sian cos­mo­nauts Alexan­der Misurkin and An­ton Shkaplerov; and Ja­panese as­tro­naut Nor­ishige Kanai.

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