Where to look to see the out of control Progress robotic spacecraft from Australian capital cities

May 4, 2015 | By | Add a Comment
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(Posted 4 May 2015) Australian observers are well placed to see the out of control Progress M-27M robotic spacecraft pass overhead prior to its unplanned and uncontrolled re-entry.

The unmanned Progress M-52 (ISS-17P) spacecraft photographed by the crew of Expedition 11 following its undocking from the International Space Station at 15:16 CDT on 15 June 2005. The spacecraft had previously delivered supplies to the space station before being filled with rubbish and disconnected from the orbital complex, in preparation for its destruction on reentry into the Earth's atmosphere. Image credit NASA.

The unmanned Progress M-52 (ISS-17P) spacecraft photographed by the crew of Expedition 11 following its undocking from the International Space Station at 15:16 CDT on 15 June 2005. The spacecraft had previously delivered supplies to the space station before being filled with rubbish and disconnected from the orbital complex, in preparation for its destruction on reentry into the Earth’s atmosphere. Image credit NASA.

According to Spaceflightnow.com, the spacecraft is expected to re-enter between 5 and 7 May 2015. The Progress spacecraft was supposed to deliver supplies to the International Space Station, then re-enter the Earth’s atmosphere in a planned manner so that it is destroyed in an controlled manner over the Pacific Ocean. An as yet unidentified error at launch resulted in the unmanned spacecraft spinning out of control (see below video).

Assuming you have clear skies, residents of all Australian capital cities have the opportunity to see the out of control Progress M-27M pass overhead. The Progress spacecraft will look like a slowly moving star. Select the applicable link below for your city below. Note that the predictions will become out of date as the spacecraft is slowed by the Earth’s atmosphere. Also if your city is not listed, then the Progress spacecraft is not visible from it.

Brisbane / Gold Coast / Tweed Heads / Sydney / Canberra / Melbourne / Hobart / Perth / Adelaide

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This website is maintained by Paul Floyd. I am an amateur astronomer (and school teacher) with 25 years experience (as at 2015) in running a range of education and public astronomy outreach activities. As of January 2015, I have been providing astronomy information via the WWW for eighteen years.