The International Space Station passed some 400 kilometers over Gujarat on Tuesday night, giving people, especially in Ahmedabad and Rajkot, a glimpse of the space technology marvel. The space station is the third brightest object in the sky after the sun and moon.
The ISS was visible as a bright dot when it emerged from the south-west horizon at 8:35 pm, and vanished some six minutes later in the opposite direction.
The International Space Station (ISS) is a multi-national collaborative project between five space agencies including NASA, Roscosmos, JAXA, ESA and CSA. The space station is located in the earth orbit and is easy to spot.
The see this beautiful marvel, all you need is a clear sky but there are other requirements also.
On July 14, the ISS was flying over some Indian cities among other countries at an angle of nearly 90 degrees. People living in Delhi, Jaipur, Rajkot and Ahmedabad got a chance to spot the ISS.
"Due to its current path, ISS was clearly visible today for the people living in Ahmedabad and Rajkot. People in other cities of Gujarat may not have seen it this clearly mainly because the ISS did not pass directly overhead and remained at an angle," said Narottam Sahoo, an adviser with the Gujarat Council of Science and Technology (GUJCOST).
"This is the first time I have actually spotted it. This massive structure is testimony to mankind's engineering prowess," said Jinal Zala, assistant professor with an engineering college.
Among the enthusiastic stargazers was 10-year-old Krishna Raval who said he has seen videos of the ISS but was thrilled to have seen it in the sky.
(With inputs from PTI)