ISSTracker SatTracker proves how elusive the ISS and Hubble Space Telescope really are

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There's something shining and flying across the sky at dawn! Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it's the International Space Station (ISS). Or maybe it's the Hubble Space Telescope (HST)? Either way, the clumsily dual-named ISSTracker SatTracker, from the same developer as EasyStreetView, will help you track both man-made satellites across the sky, working out the best times and locations to see them.

From the Nokia Store description:

Tracks satellites & predicts their visible passes over your location. Supports ISS (International Space Station), Hubble Space Telescope, and any other satellite listed @ defined by the user. Automatically downloads current orbit data, shows realtime-updated satellite location now and within the next hour on Nokia Map (street, terrain, satellite) zoomable from world map to street level. Supports both GPS and manually entered coords.

For each satellite, the program shows (and updates every 3 seconds) on Nokia Maps its current position and where it will be within the next hour (in 5-minute steps). The map can be zoomed in/out from world map to street level, and map imagery can be selected from street, terrain and satellite.

Here's ISSTracker in action:

ISSTracker screenshotISSTracker screenshot

Your location is needed so that the utility can do an awful lot of hard maths in working out what you can see and when...! (Right) The latest orbit data for both objects/satellites is automatically refreshed when you start the application.

ISSTracker screenshotISSTracker screenshot

So there we are, the dates, times, durations and places to look in the sky if I want to see the ISS - blink and I'll miss it!! The graphical plot show the object track across the globe in five minute steps and, although not shown here, can be multi-touch zoomed if needed. (Right) The help pages explain the background and some of the physics...

ISSTracker screenshotISSTracker screenshot

The same applies to the HST, though it seems that conditions/times won't be right for me to see it anytime soon.... Ah well. At least I can (right) insert the relevant TLE URL for another satellite of my choice and ISSTracker will then do the calculations for this as well.

You can in fact add any other satellite out of hundreds of satellites listed at Adding a satellite only takes entering its name and the name of file containing its orbit data (as listed on CelesTrak).

Great stuff. You can buy ISSTracker at the Nokia Store here and (after Jan 1st) more probably at the developer's own site.

Source / Credit: Nokia Store