Skip to main content

Sighting Location

Select Location

Location: Tampa, Florida, United States

The following ISS sightings are possible from Wednesday Dec 12, 2018 through Friday Dec 28, 2018

Date Visible Max Height Appears Disappears Share Event
Wed Dec 12, 7:12 PM 2 min 39° 11° above NW 39° above NW  
Thu Dec 13, 6:20 PM 6 min 36° 10° above NNW 10° above ESE  
Fri Dec 14, 7:04 PM 5 min 24° 11° above WNW 11° above S  
Sat Dec 15, 6:12 PM 6 min 62° 10° above NW 11° above SSE  
Mon Dec 17, 6:08 PM 1 min 15° 15° above SSW 11° above S  
Fri Dec 21, 6:26 AM 2 min 24° 11° above S 24° above SE  
Sat Dec 22, 5:36 AM < 1 min 10° 10° above SE 10° above SE  
Sun Dec 23, 6:18 AM 6 min 86° 11° above SW 10° above NE  
Mon Dec 24, 5:28 AM 4 min 33° 27° above SSE 11° above ENE  
Tue Dec 25, 6:13 AM 3 min 28° 27° above NW 11° above NNE  
Wed Dec 26, 5:24 AM < 1 min 10° 10° above NE 10° above NE  
2018-12-13 00:12:00.0,Wed Dec 12, 7:12 PM,2 min,39°,11° above NW,39° above NW|2018-12-13 23:20:00.0,Thu Dec 13, 6:20 PM,6 min,36°,10° above NNW,10° above ESE|2018-12-15 00:04:00.0,Fri Dec 14, 7:04 PM,5 min,24°,11° above WNW,11° above S|2018-12-15 23:12:00.0,Sat Dec 15, 6:12 PM,6 min,62°,10° above NW,11° above SSE|2018-12-17 23:08:00.0,Mon Dec 17, 6:08 PM,1 min,15°,15° above SSW,11° above S|2018-12-21 11:26:00.0,Fri Dec 21, 6:26 AM,2 min,24°,11° above S,24° above SE|2018-12-22 10:36:00.0,Sat Dec 22, 5:36 AM,< 1 min,10°,10° above SE,10° above SE|2018-12-23 11:18:00.0,Sun Dec 23, 6:18 AM,6 min,86°,11° above SW,10° above NE|2018-12-24 10:28:00.0,Mon Dec 24, 5:28 AM,4 min,33°,27° above SSE,11° above ENE|2018-12-25 11:13:00.0,Tue Dec 25, 6:13 AM,3 min,28°,27° above NW,11° above NNE|2018-12-26 10:24:00.0,Wed Dec 26, 5:24 AM,< 1 min,10°,10° above NE,10° above NE|

The space station looks like an airplane or a very bright star moving across the sky, except it doesn’t have flashing lights or change direction. It will also be moving considerably faster than a typical airplane (airplanes generally fly at about 600 miles per hour; the space station flies at 17,500 miles per hour).

Below is a time-lapse photo of the space station moving across the sky.

The International Space Station is seen in this 30 second exposure as it flies over Elkton, VA early in the morning, Saturday, August 1, 2015. Photo Credit: NASA/Bill Ingalls The International Space Station is seen in this 30 second exposure as it flies over Elkton, VA early in the morning, Saturday, August 1, 2015. Photo Credit: NASA/Bill Ingalls

Visit the NASA Johnson Flickr Photostream

How do I Spot The Station?

What does all this sighting information mean?

Time is when the sighting opportunity will begin in your local time zone. All sightings will occur within a few hours before or after sunrise or sunset. This is the optimum viewing period as the sun reflects off the space station and contrasts against the darker sky.

Visible is the maximum time period the space station is visible before crossing back below the horizon.

Max Height is measured in degrees (also known as elevation). It represents the height of the space station from the horizon in the night sky. The horizon is at zero degrees, and directly overhead is ninety degrees. If you hold your fist at arm’s length and place your fist resting on the horizon, the top will be about 10 degrees.

Appears is the location in the sky where the station will be visible first. This value, like maximum height, also is measured in degrees from the horizon. The letters represent compass directions -- N is north, WNW is west by northwest, and so on.

Disappears represents where in the night sky the International Space Station will leave your field of view.

Astronomical Horizon