Question about heavens-above web site

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draghuram

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Hi,

I use heavens-above web site to find times for ISS and space shuttle viewing and I must say that the site is very nice and useful. How ever, I don't see "AM" or "PM" in the times that are reported. They don't look like following 24 hour format either. Can any one please clarify how I should read these times? For example, ISS chart listed for Feb 8 are 05:09:37 and 06:42:05. With the help of NASA web site, I confirmed that the first time (5:09:37) is indeed in the morning. My question is how do I find out this information from heavens-above itself? I am sure I am missing some thing though I can't put my finger on it.

I am sorry if this is not the right forum but it looked like it is the closest in terms of topic. I also read FAQ at heavens-above.com and sent mail to the maintainer with no response. Since I see lot of references to that web site at space.com articles, I thought that I might ask here.

Thanks in advance,
Raghu
 
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MeteorWayne

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Actually, the times do follow a 24 hour format. It's hard to notice that sometimes with the ISS passes, since there's a pattern where you have morning passes for a week or rwo, then usually a gap with no visibility, then evening passes for a while. If you're in a period with morning passes only, all the times will be in before noon.

To check that, look at the "satellites brighter than magnitude 4.0 list, then if AM (< 12:00) numbers are listed, click on "Next PM" at the top and you will see that the evening times are from, say 17:00 to 21:00.

You can also, on the ISS page, click "Next" until you find when a period with evening passes will be coming up.

Wayne

BTW, this would be better in Ask the Astronomer, so I'll move it there.
 
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3488

Guest
Hi Raghu,

Heavens Above does use the 24 hour format. The visible ISS passes are all in the mornings currently. Check your Sun & Moon data for today. That is certainly in 24 Hour format. Chech the other links like Envisat, etc.

Andrew Brown.
 
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Saiph

Guest
If you haven't yet, I highly recommend going out and trying to spot the Iridium Flares heavens above lists for you.

Their communication satellites (part of the so called Iridium Constellation) with unusually large and positioned panels that produce very bright, downward reflections of sunlight. So a normal satellite, for about 4 seconds, flares up to sometimes -6.0 magnitude! They're my favorite satellites to catch, especially to Wow my friends.
 
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MeteorWayne

Guest
Actually, from what I understand the panels (Antennas) aren't terribly large, only about the size of your front door, but are highly reflective. When you get a -9 one right on you (that's the maximum brightness for one high overhead where the spot passes directly over your location) it will leave an impression on your mind and retina!!

Considering that a full moon is only 16 times brighter, and all the light from the Iridium is concentrated into a single point...it's jaw dropping.

Edit, I found the description

The mechanism providing the flare/glint are the Main Mission Antenna (MMA) on each of the satellites. These antennas (of which there are three- 120 degrees apart, 188 cm wide x 86 cm long x 4 cm thick each, or ~ 6 X 3 Feet) are highly reflective aluminum flat plates (treated with silver-coated Teflon for thermal control) that are angled 40 degrees away from the axis of the body of the satellite
 
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draghuram

Guest
MeteorWayne":3umsjees said:
Actually, the times do follow a 24 hour format. It's hard to notice that sometimes with the ISS passes, since there's a pattern where you have morning passes for a week or rwo, then usually a gap with no visibility, then evening passes for a while. If you're in a period with morning passes only, all the times will be in before noon.

To check that, look at the "satellites brighter than magnitude 4.0 list, then if AM (< 12:00) numbers are listed, click on "Next PM" at the top and you will see that the evening times are from, say 17:00 to 21:00.

You can also, on the ISS page, click "Next" until you find when a period with evening passes will be coming up.
Indeed, I checked future timings for ISS and they do show up in 24hour format. Thanks for the quick response(s).

Raghu.
 
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