SUBSIDING STORM: A strong (Kp=7) geomagnetic storm sparked by a CME impact on Sept. 30th is subsiding now. At maximum, during the early hours of Oct. 1st, Northern Lights descended as far south in the United States as Michigan,Maryland, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Ohio, Montana,
Frank Olsen photographed a bright green curtain shining through moonlit clouds over Sortland, Norway:
ISS COMPANION: Europe’s massive ATV-3 cargo carrier undocked from the International Space Station (ISS) on Sept. 28th. Now the spacecraft, as large as a double-decker bus, is leading the ISS in orbit around Earth. Monika Landy-Gyebnar saw it this morning flying over Veszprem, Hungary:
“I went outside to see the ISS,” says Landy-Gyebnar. “About a minute before the space station appeared, I saw a relatively bright object flying overheads almost where the ISS was to fly. Then I remembered that the ATV-3 undocked from ISS on Friday–and there it was! Just as ATV-3 has faded, the ISS emerged from the clouds and followed the small cargo vehicle towards the east.”
The ATV-3 will reenter Earth’s atmosphere on or about October 3rd, disintegrating in a spectacular fireball over the Pacific Ocean. Until then, sky watchers should be alert for the cargo vessel leading the ISS across the night sky. ATV-3 and ISS flyby predictions may be found on the web or on your smartphone.