May 16 2020: Gulf of Mexico to Gulf of Maine International Space Station Overflight Tonight

The ISS will fly over the eastern United States during twilight tonight, crossing New Orleans, Washington (DC), New York and Boston. You’ll be able to see the ISS crossing directly overhead between 8:38pmCDT for New Orleans and other places in the Central Time Zone, 9:42pm EDT for the folks from Washington, DC and the Eastern Time Zone.

Map for the overflight, centered on Washington, DC, so you can see the path over the eastern United States.

Heavens-above.com forecast of ISS ground track for Saturday, May 16th.
Time hacks in eastern daylight time.
Example sky plot for ISS over Washington, DC.
This map will be similar for most locations near the ground track.
A couple of minutes earlier for locations to the southwest, later for places to the northeast.

For many locations, the track of the ISS through our skies will take it in front of the handle of the Big Dipper! The stars of the tail of the Great Bear may be hard to pick out of the bright twilight. I’ve found them easier to see after the ISS goes by, as the eye has something distant to focus on.

This fly-over is not a planned event specifically for the Eastern United States – it’s a consequence of orbital mechanics of the many loops the ISS takes around our planet.

2 thoughts on “May 16 2020: Gulf of Mexico to Gulf of Maine International Space Station Overflight Tonight

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