ISS pass tonight

My ISS Detector app has detected that the ISS will be passing over tonight. Over Cape Town, that is.
It’ll be passing over a lot of the rest of the world as well of course, but it’s the Cape Town bit that I’m going to be looking out for.

wp-1456815575297.jpg

Here’s a quick screenshot from my phone, showing a few details.

As you will note, the pass begins near Uranus just before… I’m sorry? Is there something you find amusing about that? Honestly, grow up.
Anyway, you’ll need to look North West towards Uranus at… STOP SNIGGERING AT THE BACK!

You’ll need to look North West at 7:58 this evening, and you should see a bright white dot racing South East across the sky. You won’t need a telescope, binoculars or a magnifying glass. You won’t miss it: it’ll be the brightest object up there. And the only one that’s moving at 8km/second.
Take your kids out and show them before bedtime, and let’s hold thumbs for a cloudless evening.

For the nerds out there, I use RunaR’s ISS Detector app (actually, I have the Pro version at R29, but the free version does most everything you need), and it’s really good for alerting you to interesting stuff in the sky.

Scott Kelly Sunrise

I was going to wake up early and take some shots of the sunrise this morning. But then I didn’t.
Fortunately, astronaut Scott Kelly, currently aboard the International Space Station, took one for me:

image

He must have got up properly early to get that.

4K ISS TV

This looks good:

NASA TV is launching a dedicated 4K channel

Here’s the skinner:

NASA has announced that it will launch a new 4K television channel dedicated to showing UHD footage on November 1st.

The space agency is working with a company called Harmonic, a video delivery infrastructure company, to launch the channel. NASA is calling it “the first ever non-commercial consumer ultra-high definition channel in North America.” Harmonic is providing NASA Television with the ability to deliver the 4K (2160p at 60 frames per second) video. NASA’s 4K channel will primarily feature the UHD footage that the agency has been filming on the International Space Station over the past few months, as well as 4K time-lapses created from images taken aboard the ISS.

Which sounds like something that would be right up my street. And super educational for the kids as well. Also, can you imaging one of those 4K time-lapses on the big screen at a party or something? Magic. But hang on…

You will be able to access it on the internet on most devices, provided you have access to a connection of 13 Mbps or higher.

And that’s going to instantly rule out 99.9% of South Africa. Even if you’re going to use your 3G HSDPA or LTE mobile connection (which would easily be fast enough), with that sort of download, you’re going to chow your monthly bandwidth allowance in about 1.4 seconds.

Not great.

Brilliant Hyundai ad

I’ve always had a bit of a soft spot of the International Space Station. As it happens, I have a bit of soft spot for my Hyundai as well, but that’s not important right now.

What is important is that you watch this amazing Hyundai/International Space Station ad thing. It is, as the title of the post may have mentioned, brilliant.

Pretty cool, ne?

With our extremely connected, information-rich world, it can be tough to make one piece of communication stand out from the rest.

Well yes. But I must mention here that it only really worked because her dad was on the Space Station. It would have been less effective if he worked in, say, for example, a lab in Cape Town.

The project not only highlighted the difficulty in pluralising the word “Genesis”, it also broke the Guinness World Record for “the largest tyre track image,” measuring 59,808,480.26 square feet. Beeg.

More here, including some amazing behind-the-scenes stuff.

Radvertising.

Space Station eclipse photo isn’t real

After the asphyxiated Capetonian dog, I’ve discovered that there’s even more fakery and hoaxism on the internet.
Hoodathunkit?

Here’s one of the culprits:
Tweet: Solar eclipse at the International Space Station. #eclipse #eclipse2015

17newx501h7yzjpg

But no.

Says Gizmodo’s Jesus Diaz:

It’s a 3D rendering made in Terragen 2 by DevianArt user ~A4size-ska. It took 38 hours to render. The image of the Milky Way was added later in Photoshop. You can get the high resolution original here. It’s beautiful anyway.

Think first, share second, people…

I knew it the moment I saw it. It was just too similar to this astronomically impossible “Summer Solstice at the North Pole” image, which is obviously also not what it claims to be, but was also a digitally constructed picture, built in Terragen

 c3e71f57cb735d61328627d12ea375ef

Thankfully, Jesus does share an REAL image of the moon’s shadow on the earth, taken from the International Space Station. Sadly, given the unlimited imagination and lack of astronomical restrictions of the images above, dare I suggest that it’s a little underwhelming:

17ney6wiq4muzjpg

Did I really just say that about a photo from the ISS? I think I did.

It’s all good though, because space ‘tog Don Pettit has previously given us this amazing stuff.