posted on Aug, 7 2007 @ 08:48 PM
As others have said, it could be the ISS. It could also be another satellite. The ISS travels from West to East across the sky, other satellites tend
to travel North to South or South to North.
I also saw what I thought to be the ISS that same night, but did not check the time, or if it was visible, but at a rough guess it would have been the
same time. A quick check here
tells me that it was indeed visible just before 11 PM that night - so there is
your answer - it probably was the ISS.
As for the flash you saw, it was most likely from a tumbling satellite, space junk, or perhaps a meteor. It's pretty safe to say it was unrelated to
the ISS pass.
Often when a satellite or the ISS disappears it can be due to passing into the Earth's shadow, or as someone else mentioned, it can be lost in haze
or cloud, especially when it is not very bright in the first place. In this case it was quite bright for me, and I suspect for you as well, since we
are not too far away, so it probably passed into Earth's shadow.
By the way, not every meteor leaves a trail/has a tail. But now that you have seen a man made object in orbit, you can easily tell them apart from the
difference in speed - even the slowest meteors will cross the sky in a few tens of seconds at most (20-30 seconds is probably the upper limit). Most
satellites travel at about the same rate across the sky - less than 10km/s (IIRC 8km/s is average). Meteors have a minimum speed of about 11km/s, but
this is unusual to see, and the majority of slow meteors will be traveling at speeds closer to 25km/s.