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Tim Peake on the International Space Station: Catch the first glimpse of ISS with British astronaut on board

Published 16/12/2015

Major Tim Peake (second right) with crew members Russian commander Yuri Malenchenko (front centre) and US astronaut Tim Kopra (left) at the the International Space Station (ISS) having emerged from the Soyuz space capsule. PA
Major Tim Peake emerges from the Soyuz space capsule hatch at the International Space Station. (European Space Agency/PA)
Screen grabbed image taken from footage issued by European Space Agency of British astronaut Major Tim Peake (second right) with crew members Russian commander Yuri Malenchenko (front centre) and US astronaut Tim Kopra (left) at the the International Space Station (ISS) having emerged from the Soyuz space capsule. PA
British astronaut Tim Peake
UK astronaut Tim Peake reacts as his space suit is tested at the Russian-leased Baikonur cosmodrome, prior to blasting off to the International Space Station (ISS), on December 15, 2015. Russia's Soyuz TMA-19M spacecraft carrying the International Space Station (ISS) Expedition 46/47 crew of Britain's astronaut Tim Peake, Russian cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko and US astronaut Tim Kopra blasted off to the ISS on December 15, 2015. AFP/Getty Images
The Soyuz TMA-19M rocket with Expedition 46 Soyuz Commander Yuri Malenchenko of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos), Flight Engineer Tim Kopra of NASA, and Flight Engineer Tim Peake of ESA (European Space Agency) launches into space from Baikonur cosmodrome on December 15, 2015 in Baikonur, Kazakhstan.
The Moscow control room as Major Tim Peake blasted off into orbit on board the Soyuz space capsule on his way to becoming the first British astronaut to join the crew of the International Space Station (ISS).
Expedition 46-47 crewmembers ESA astronaut Tim Peake, NASA astronaut Tim Kopra and commander Yuri Malenchenko launch into space from Baikonur cosmodrome on December 15, 2015 in Baikonur, Kazakhstan.
Major Tim Peake blasting off into orbit on board the Soyuz space capsule on his way to becoming the first British astronaut to join the crew of the International Space Station (ISS).
From L: Britain's astronaut Tim Peake, Russian cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko and US astronaut Tim Kopra walk after their space suits were tested at the Russian-leased Baikonur cosmodrome, prior to blasting off to the International Space Station (ISS), on December 15, 2015. AFP PHOTO / KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEVKIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP/Getty Images
US astronaut Tim Kopra waves from a bus after his space suit was tested at the Russian-leased Baikonur cosmodrome on December 15, 2015. Russia's Soyuz TMA-19M spacecraft carrying the International Space Station (ISS) Expedition 46/47 crew of Britain's astronaut Tim Peake, Russian cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko and US astronaut Tim Kopra is scheduled to blast off to the ISS on December 15, 2015. AFP PHOTO / KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEVKIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP/Getty Images
Britain's astronaut Tim Peake (bottom), Russian cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko (top) and US astronaut Tim Kopra wave as they board the Soyuz TMA-19M spacecraft at the Russian-leased Baikonur cosmodrome, prior to blasting off to the International Space Station (ISS), on December 15, 2015. AFP PHOTO / POOL / SHAMIL ZHUMATOVSHAMIL ZHUMATOV/AFP/Getty Images

Sky-watchers may be able to catch a glimpse of the International Space Station tonight - with British astronaut Major Tim Peake onboard for the first time.

Major Peake became the first UK astronaut to join the crew of the ISS after the Soyuz space capsule successfully docked with the craft last night.

And it is expected to pass over Belfast at around 5.57pm and be visible for two minutes.

The forecast for this evening predicts "patchy clouds", so if there is enough clear sky the space station will be visible with the naked eye.

Major Peake, along with Russian Commander Yuri Malenchenko and US astronaut Tim Kopra, have now joined the station's team of three for the next six months.

The 43-year-old entered the station with a huge smile on his face as the full crew joined in front of the camera to listen to congratulatory messages from family members and space travel experts watching from the European Space Agencies base in Baikonur, Kazakhstan.

The Principia's launch and journey to rendezvous with the space station went smoothly, however, there was an issue with docking meaning pilot Yuri Malenchenko had to manually guide the Soyuz capsule into the station's port.

The arrival of the three new crew members on to the ISS was more than half an hour behind schedule.

A misalignment problem meant Malenchenko had to take manual control of the capsule, back away from the station and make a second approach.

But the second attempt to dock, at a careful speed of 20-30 centimetres per second, was successful and barely 10 minutes behind schedule.

Tim Peake has landed back on earth
Tim Peake has landed back on earth
Undated handout photo issued by the European Space Agency of astronaut Tim Peake in Cupola, as the Soyuz capsule carrying Major Tim Peake and his two crewmates has released itself from the International Space Station and undocked. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Saturday June 18, 2016. See PA story SCIENCE Peake. Photo credit should read: ESA/PA Wire NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.
Image of the Soyuz spacecraft carrying British astronaut Tim Peake and his two crew mates
Handout image issued by the European Space Agency of Major Tim Peake in his Sokol suit 10 days ago, as the Soyuz capsule carrying Major Tim Peake and his two crewmates has released itself from the International Space Station and undocked. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Saturday June 18, 2016. See PA story SCIENCE Peake. Photo credit should read: ESA/PA Wire NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.
Image of the Soyuz spacecraft carrying British astronaut Tim Peake and his two crew mates
BEST QUALITY AVAILABLE Undated handout image issued by the European Space Agency of the hatch to the Soyuz capsule carrying Major Tim Peake and his two crewmates being closed before it released itself from the International Space Station and undocked. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Saturday June 18, 2016. See PA story SCIENCE Peake. Photo credit should read: ESA/PA Wire NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.
BEST QUALITY AVAILABLE Undated handout image issued by the European Space Agency of the Soyuz capsule carrying Major Tim Peake and his two crewmates which has released itself from the International Space Station and undocked. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Saturday June 18, 2016. See PA story SCIENCE Peake. Photo credit should read: ESA/PA Wire NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.
Screen grabbed image taken from footage issued by European Space Agency of British astronaut Major Tim Peake emerging from the Soyuz space capsule hatch at the the International Space Station (ISS).PA
Screen grabbed image taken from footage issued by European Space Agency of British astronaut Major Tim Peake (second right) with crew members Russian commander Yuri Malenchenko (front centre) and US astronaut Tim Kopra (left) at the the International Space Station (ISS) having emerged from the Soyuz space capsule. PA
Screen grabbed image taken from footage issued by the European Space Agency of the Soyuz space capsule carrying British astronaut Major Tim Peake, docked at the the International Space Station (ISS). PA
Screen grabbed image taken from footage issued by European Space Agency of British astronaut Major Tim Peake emerging from the Soyuz space capsule hatch at the the International Space Station (ISS). PA
Screen grabbed image taken from footage issued by the European Space Agency of the Soyuz space capsule carrying British astronaut Major Tim Peake, docked at the the International Space Station (ISS). PA
Screen grabbed image taken from footage issued by European Space Agency of Russian commander Yuri Malenchenko emergingfrom the Soyuz space capsule hatch at the the International Space Station (ISS). PA
UK astronaut Tim Peake reacts as his space suit is tested at the Russian-leased Baikonur cosmodrome, prior to blasting off to the International Space Station (ISS), on December 15, 2015. Russia's Soyuz TMA-19M spacecraft carrying the International Space Station (ISS) Expedition 46/47 crew of Britain's astronaut Tim Peake, Russian cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko and US astronaut Tim Kopra blasted off to the ISS on December 15, 2015. AFP/Getty Images
Screen grabbed image taken from footage issued by the European Space Agency of the Soyuz space capsule carrying British astronaut Major Tim Peake, approaching docking at the the International Space Station (ISS). PA
Screen grabbed image taken from footage issued by the European Space Agency of the Soyuz space capsule carrying British astronaut Major Tim Peake, approaching docking at the the International Space Station (ISS). PA
Major Tim Peake blasting off into orbit on board the Soyuz space capsule on his way to becoming the first British astronaut to join the crew of the International Space Station (ISS).
Expedition 46-47 crewmembers ESA astronaut Tim Peake, NASA astronaut Tim Kopra and commander Yuri Malenchenko launch into space from Baikonur cosmodrome on December 15, 2015 in Baikonur, Kazakhstan.
The Soyuz TMA-19M rocket with Expedition 46 Soyuz Commander Yuri Malenchenko of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos), Flight Engineer Tim Kopra of NASA, and Flight Engineer Tim Peake of ESA (European Space Agency) launches into space from Baikonur cosmodrome on December 15, 2015 in Baikonur, Kazakhstan.
Major Tim Peake (left) blasting off into orbit on board the Soyuz space capsule on his way to becoming the first British astronaut to join the crew of the International Space Station (ISS).
Major Tim Peake blasting off into orbit on board the Soyuz space capsule on his way to becoming the first British astronaut to join the crew of the International Space Station (ISS).
British astronaut Tim Peake, member of the main crew of the expedition to the International Space Station (ISS), gestures prior the launch of Soyuz TMA-19M space ship at the Russian leased Baikonur cosmodrome, Kazakhstan, Tuesday, Dec. 15, 2015.
Photographers take pictures as Russia's Soyuz TMA-19M spacecraft carrying the International Space Station (ISS) Expedition 46/47 crew of Britain's astronaut Tim Peake, Russian cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko and US astronaut Tim Kopra blasts off from the launch pad at Russian-leased Baikonur cosmodrome on December 15, 2015. AFP PHOTO / KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEVKIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP/Getty Images
Russian Space Agency experts help British astronaut Tim Peake, a member of the main crew to the International Space Station (ISS), to stand up after inspecting his space suit prior to the launch of Soyuz-FG rocket at the Russian leased Baikonur cosmodrome, Kazakhstan, Tuesday, Dec. 15, 2015. (AP Photo/Dmitry Lovetsky)
Russian cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko walks to board the Soyuz TMA-19M spacecraft at the Russian-leased Baikonur cosmodrome, prior to blasting off to the International Space Station (ISS), on December 15, 2015.
Britain's astronaut Tim Peake smiles as he walks to board the Soyuz TMA-19M spacecraft at the Russian-leased Baikonur cosmodrome, prior to blasting off to the International Space Station (ISS), on December 15, 2015.
Britain's astronaut Tim Peake (bottom), Russian cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko (top) and US astronaut Tim Kopra board the Soyuz TMA-19M spacecraft at the Russian-leased Baikonur cosmodrome, prior to blasting off to the International Space Station (ISS), on December 15, 2015.
Russian cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko waves to his relatives from a bus after his space suit was tested at the Russian-leased Baikonur cosmodrome on December 15, 2015.
US astronaut Tim Kopra waves from a bus after his space suit was tested at the Russian-leased Baikonur cosmodrome on December 15, 2015.
Britain's astronaut Tim Peake (bottom), Russian cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko (top) and US astronaut Tim Kopra wave as they board the Soyuz TMA-19M spacecraft at the Russian-leased Baikonur cosmodrome, prior to blasting off to the International Space Station (ISS), on December 15, 2015. AFP PHOTO / POOL / SHAMIL ZHUMATOVSHAMIL ZHUMATOV/AFP/Getty Images
The Moscow control room as Major Tim Peake blasted off into orbit on board the Soyuz space capsule on his way to becoming the first British astronaut to join the crew of the International Space Station (ISS).
Britain's astronaut Tim Peake waves as he walks to board a bus at the Russian-leased Baikonur cosmodrome, prior to blasting off to the International Space Station (ISS), on December 15, 2015.
Britain's astronaut Tim Peake gestures to his children from a bus after his space suit was tested at the Russian-leased Baikonur cosmodrome, prior to blasting off to the International Space Station (ISS), on December 15, 2015.
From L: Britain's astronaut Tim Peake, Russian cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko and US astronaut Tim Kopra walk after their space suits were tested at the Russian-leased Baikonur cosmodrome, prior to blasting off to the International Space Station (ISS), on December 15, 2015.
Expedition 46 Soyuz Commander Yuri Malenchenko of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos), top, Flight Engineer Tim Kopra of NASA, center, and Flight Engineer Tim Peake of ESA (European Space Agency), bottom, wave farewell prior to boarding the Soyuz TMA-19M rocket for launch on December 15, 2015 in Baikonur, Kazakhstan.

You can follow the International Space Station's progress around the world here.

What the ISS looks like

The International Space Station is incredibly bright and resembles a star racing across the horizon.

At 220 miles above the Earth, it travels at an average speed of 18,000mph and make multiple orbits around the planet every day.

It takes the craft around 90minutes to orbit the earth meaning those onboard experience a sunset or a sunrise every 45 minutes.

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