Re: Are iridium flares less common in some areas?

From: Tom Wagner (
Date: Sat Apr 16 2005 - 20:03:01 EDT

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    Regarding a thread that I started on Fri May 10, 2002, the subject which I 
    am responding to here, I have just received a response from a researcher at 
    the South Pole itself. In my message I had noted how many flares should be 
    visible per 24 hour period at the Amundsen-Scott south pole station. The 
    archived e-mail that this person discovered recently is here.
    I will quote what he has told me. [Also included is some other off topic 
    information. It's quite fascinating.] I'm waiting to see if I can list his 
    e-mail address. If so, I will post that later. Although, now that I think 
    about it, his website is listed so you can probably e-mail him through that 
    if you wish.
    Begin quote:
    I just stumbled on this old (2002) conversation you had about iridium 
    flares. I am currently in my third year at South Pole Station. Because I run 
    11 projects, mostly in upper atmospheric physics, I have to walk almost 
    three miles every day of the year to visit my various sites. Anyway, on my 
    way over to my VLF transmitter just now, which is about one mile away from 
    station, I caught one of the best flares I have every seen.....spectacular!
    You may want to pass this along to your mailing list.
    Yes, I see flares all the time when I am outside. The sun sets around March 
    21st and will rise around September 21st and it is almost completely dark 
    now, so the auroras are getting really good now and Jupiter is visible now 
    and just appears to rotate around us all day in the eternal darkness. This 
    is truly a place of magic.
    If you want to see many photos of the Pole, just visit my website at
    I update it at the end of every month so aurora photos will be showing up 
    soon. I have a lot of auroras in April through August, 2004 page of the 
    I believe carbon dioxide freezes at about -117 F at this pressure altitude. 
    We experience pressure altitudes as much as 12,000 feet in the middle of 
    winter. Unfortunately, the coldest static temperature I have seen so far 
    is -108 F, although the coldest recorded temperature here was -117F. Maybe 
    the latent heat of fusion will prohibit lower temperatures?
    J. Dana Hrubes
    CUSP Science Research
    South Pole Station, Antarctica
    End quote.
    Tom  Iowa  USA
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