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Look up! Arkansas in the path of International Space Station Wednesday night

The ISS flies over all the time, but its timing and position are not always directly above Arkansas for a bright view of the station just after sunset.

ARKANSAS, USA — Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it's the International Space Station (ISS), and it's going to fly directly over Arkansas at the perfect time Wednesday evening for the sunlight to glimmer off its solar arrays to shine extra bright.

There are a few clouds in the northwestern sky which may make it a bit harder to see at first.

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Just look up! At the right time... the station, which soars roughly 227 miles above Earth's surface, should start to appear above the horizon at 7:44 p.m. in the NW sky across Arkansas. It will go straight overhead and then disappear in the SE sky.

  • Start -- 7:44 p.m. NW sky
  • Overhead -- 7:47 p.m. 
  • End -- 7:50 p.m. SE sky
Credit: KFSM


The space station will appear like a bright star that gradually moves closer to you until it is right over Arkansas. 

How bright? In the evening, there are a few stars and planets that appear first. The space station will be about as bright, or a bit brighter, than these. You'll be able to tell which one the ISS by its movement.

Credit: KFSM


The ISS flies over the U.S. all the time. This time is a bit more special because the timing and positioning are aligned for a perfect view.

Many times it doesn't fly directly above your neighborhood. You can still see the space station over a neighboring state because the station is 227 miles above Earth's surface.

Timing is everything. You need it to be mostly dark (just after dusk or just before dawn) in order to see it, but not too dark because the sun still needs to be able to reflect off the solar arrays so we can see its star-like appearance here on Earth.

Credit: KFSM

-5NEWS Weather Team, Matt Standridge

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