AS JUNE approaches hopefully it won't be long until we see the first display of noctilucent clouds, or NLC, of the 2019 season, writes STUART ATKINSON. In fact, by the time you read this it might already have happened; small displays have been known to occur in the last week of May. The biggest displays usually occur from mid-June, but any clear night now for the next two months it's worth looking to the north after midnight just in case there's a display of beautiful, eerie, silvery-blue NLC poking its head above the horizon.

The International Space Station (ISS) is still visible in our sky, in the late evening and wee small hours too, which means you'll either have to get up very early or stay up very late to see it at its best. But it's worth making the effort because seeing it drifting across the sky like a bright star and thinking, "There are people on that," is always exciting and humbling.

The good news is you don't need a telescope or even a pair of binoculars to see the space station, it is clearly visible to the naked eye as a bright star moving across the sky, perfectly silently, at about the same speed as an airplane. All you will have to do is go out a few minutes before the times listed below, look to the west (not sure which way is west? Just remember the direction you usually see the Sun setting in from where you live and face that way) and then just wait. After a few minutes you'll see what looks like a star rising up from the horizon, on a path that will take it on an arc over towards the south - i.e. heading from right to left as you look at it. That star is actually the ISS. It will then move across the sky, heading east. How bright will it get? Well, on some passes the ISS is very high and very bright, but on others it is much fainter and barely scrapes the treetops. But it is always impressive, especially when you realise that you're looking at a huge construction that took over a decade of international collaboration between 17 countries to complete, and as you're watching it some of the people living, working, and sleeping on it might well be looking down at you at the same time.

Here are the dates and times for the next week: May 23: 00.56, 22.29; 24th: 00.05, 01.40, 21.14; 25th: 00.50, 22.24; 26th: 00.00, 23.09; 27th: 00.44, 22.18, 23.54; 28th: 23.03