Late January ISS
The International Space Station will be making some late January visible passes through Santa Barbara's evening skies, weather conditions, and orbital maneuvers permitting. Here's where to look for the brightest passes in this series. You can always get the latest predictions, including early morning appearances, at Heavens-Above: https://bit.ly/2W6d0WW
On Saturday, January 19, the ISS will rise in the SW at 7:05 PM PST, and make a quick climb over our ocean horizon to fade out in the SSW at 7:07 PM, at an altitude of 31 degrees, a bit below Cetus, the Sea Monster.
On Sunday, just before the start of the umbral phases of the total lunar eclipse, the space station will make a long, low pass over our ocean horizon, starting at 6:13 PM in the S, passing through the feet of Orion, and disappearing in the Earth's shadow at 6:17 PM in the E by the bright star Procyon in Canis Minor, the Little Dog. The SB Astronomical Unit will be set up in the plaza by the theater at the Camino Real Marketplace to view the eclipse and our winter sky from about 7 PM to 11 PM.
Monday evening we'll have a bright pass which will rise at 6:57 PM in the WSW, and climb past the chest of Pegasus to vanish between Cassiopeia and her husband Cepheus in the NNW at an altitude of 45 degrees at 7 PM.
Tuesday's ISS pass will be the brightest of this sequence, rising at 6:05 PM in the SW and cruising high overhead to set in the NE at 6:11 PM, starting near the southern star Fomalhout, passing Mars, and ending near the northern star Capella.
On Wednesday, January 23, the station will appear in the W at 6:51 PM, sail by Enif, the nose of Pegasus, and Deneb, the tail of Cygnus, to vanish in the N at 6:54 PM just before reaching the bowl of the Little Dipper.
Thursday's pass will be a higher and brighter copy of Wednesday's trajectory, starting at 5:58 PM in the WSW, and ending in the NNE at 6:04 PM near the bowl of the Big Dipper.
On Friday, the ISS will rise at 6:45 PM in the NW and pass low over our mountains to set in the N at 6:47 PM below the Little Dipper, hanging bowl down from Polaris, the not-so-bright North Star.
Saturday's pass will be the last of this sequence, a brighter and slightly higher copy of Friday's pass, starting at 5:52 PM in the WNW, and setting at 5:56 PM in the NNE, by the Big Dipper.