The International Space Station will be visible to the naked eye on Christmas Eve
If you don’t manage to catch a glimpse of a reindeer-drawn sleigh hovering over your home on Christmas Eve, there’s still “Santa” to look out for.
NASA has announced that the International Space Station (ISS) will be visible to the naked eye on December 24 as it flies over the UK.
The space agency says the spacecraft “is the third brightest object in the sky and is easy to spot if you know when to look up.”
And while it’s not the man in red, the ISS could be a good alternative for the kids, big and small, who will be watching over him.
Keeping Santa’s magic alive is something parents around the world do for their children every Christmas, and NASA is suggesting they look up tonight to “see him fly.”
It won’t actually be the man in red, but the International Space Station hurtling around Earth at 17,000 miles per hour and orbiting 250 miles above the surface
WHEN CAN I SEE THE ISS?
London – 04:51 – 04:52, 06:23 – 06:28
Edinburgh – 04:51, 06:24 – 06:29
cardiff – 04:51, 06:23 – 06:28
Belfast – 06:23 – 06:27
London – 05:37 – 05:40, 07:11 – 07:19
Edinburgh – 05:37 – 05:40, 07:11 – 07:17
cardiff – 05:37 – 05:40, 07:11 – 07:17
Belfast – 05:38 – 05:40, 07:10 – 07:16
All times in GMT
The ISS is hurtling around the Earth at 17,000 miles per hour, orbiting 250 miles above the surface.
For most of the UK on Christmas Eve at 04:51 GMT it should be visible for one minute east to south-east just above the horizon and five minutes at 06:23 GMT slightly higher in the sky to the west south-west.
On Christmas morning, the station will pass again, this time for three minutes at 05:37 GMT and for seven minutes at 07:11 GMT.
It moves in an easterly direction whenever there is a chance of sighting.
For the best view of the ISS, you need to find a dark area of sky with minimal to no light pollution, according to NASA, which said it was the “third brightest object.”
“Visible to the naked eye, it looks like a fast-moving airplane, only much higher and thousands of miles per hour faster!” NASA said.
You can also distinguish the ISS from an airplane because it doesn’t have any blinking lights.
For those on the ISS, they are creating their own “space family traditions” and could do so 16 times on December 25 as the station orbits the Earth every 90 minutes.
Last year, they celebrated with a turkey dinner and gifts delivered by a SpaceX Dragon cargo ship.
|Sat Dec 17, 7:12 am||5 minutes||21°||10° above SSW||10° above E|
|Sunday, December 18, 6:24 a.m||4 mins||15°||10° above S||10° above ESE|
|Mon. Dec. 19, 7:11 am||6 mins||39°||10° over SW||10° above E|
|Tue Dec 20 6:23 am||6 mins||28°||10° above SSW||10° above E|
|Wed Dec 21 5:36 am||4 mins||20°||14° above S||10° above E|
|Wed Dec 21 7:11 am||7 mins||65°||10° above WSW||10° above E|
|Thu, December 22, 4:50 p.m||1 minute||13°||13° above SE||10° above ESE|
|Thu, Dec 22, 6:23 am||6 mins||50°||13° over SW||10° above E|
|Friday, December 23 at 5:37 am||4 mins||37°||35° above S||10° above E|
|Friday, December 23, 7:10 a.m||7 mins||89°||10° above W||10° above E|
|Sat Dec 24 4:51 am||1 minute||17°||17° above ESE||10° above E|
|Sat Dec 24 at 6:23 am||5 minutes||78°||24° above WSW||10° above E|
|Sunday 25 December 5:37 am||3 minutes||61°||61° above SE||10° above E|
|Sunday, December 25, 7:11 a.m||7 mins||86°||10° above W||10° above E|
|Mon Dec 26 4:51 am||1 minute||18°||18° above E||10° above E|
|Mon Dec 26 6:24 am||5 minutes||86°||33° above W||10° above E|
|Tue Dec 27 5:38 am||3 minutes||62°||62° above E||10° above E|
|Tue Dec 27 7:11 am||7 mins||81°||10° above W||10° above ESE|
|Wednesday, December 28, 4:52 a.m||1 minute||17°||17° above E||10° above E|
|Wed Dec 28 6:25 am||5 minutes||90°||33° above W||10° above E|
|Thu, Dec 29, 5:39 am||3 minutes||62°||62° above E||10° above E|
|Thu, Dec 29, 7:12 a.m||7 mins||53°||10° above W||10° above SE|
NASA isn’t the only government agency involved in Santa’s tracking quest.
NORAD, the North American Aerospace Defense Command, a binational agency run by Canada and the US, is also watching the path of the cheerful gift-giver.
For over 60 years, NORAD and its predecessor, the Continental Air Defense Command (CONAD), have tracked Santa’s flight on Christmas Eve.
They’ll begin tracking at midnight on December 23, keeping users updated on where he’s likely to be at any given time during his mission to bring toys to the world’s children.
But the ISS isn’t the only treat for stargazers this festive season.
A space rock up to 460 feet wide dubbed the “Christmas Asteroid” is hurtling past Earth and will be visible from Europe until December 19.
It made its closest approach to our planet yesterday, coming within 420,000 miles (680,000 km) of our planet.
The European Space Agency (ESA) said telescopes 11 inches (30 cm) and larger should be able to spot the Christmas asteroid.
A space rock up to 460 feet wide dubbed the ‘Christmas Asteroid’ will hurtle past Earth this festive season (stock image)
But if you think you see a sleigh clanking in the sky on Christmas Eve, you’ll be pleased to know that the man on board is flying ethically.
That’s because scientists have calculated Santa’s carbon footprint using just 20,000 tons of CO2 emissions, accounting for the elves making the presents, heating the booth and the sleigh ride.
This is equivalent to 0.5 percent of the worst estimates for the carbon footprint of the FIFA World Cup in Qatar.
The Purdue University team found that traveling around the world would release just 10g of carbon per child — the equivalent of a scoop of ice cream.
Research has shown that elves making presents for Santa, heating Santa’s cottage and then taking his sleigh ride account for just 20,000tCo2e – equivalent to 0.5 per cent of the worst estimates of the FIFA World Cup’s carbon footprint in Qatar
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EXPLANATION: THE $100 BILLION International Space Station sits 250 miles above Earth
The International Space Station (ISS) is a $100 billion (£80 billion) scientific and engineering laboratory orbiting 400 km (250 miles) above the Earth.
Since November 2000 it has been constantly manned by changing crews of astronauts and cosmonauts.
The crews came mainly from the USA and Russia, but the Japanese space agency JAXA and the European space agency ESA also sent astronauts.
The International Space Station has been continuously manned for more than 20 years and has been expanded with several new modules and system upgrades
Research conducted aboard the ISS often requires one or more of the unusual conditions found in low Earth orbit, such as: B. low gravity or oxygen.
ISS studies have examined human research, space medicine, life sciences, natural sciences, astronomy, and meteorology.
The US space agency NASA spends about US$3 billion (£2.4 billion) annually on the space station program, with the remaining funds coming from international partners including Europe, Russia and Japan.
So far, 244 people from 19 countries have visited the station, including eight private individuals who have spent up to $50 million to visit.
There is an ongoing debate about the station’s future after 2025, when it is believed that part of the original structure will reach “end of life”.
Russia, a key partner of the station, plans to launch its own orbital platform around this time, while Axiom Space, a private company, plans to simultaneously send its own modules to the station for purely commercial purposes.
NASA, ESA, JAXA and the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) are working together to build a space station in orbit around the moon, and Russia and China are working on a similar project that would also include a surface base.
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-11546453/International-Space-Station-visible-naked-eye-Christmas-Eve.html?ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490&ito=1490 The International Space Station will be visible to the naked eye on Christmas Eve