Re: An observation of the Atlas 5 launch (with the Cygnus cargo craft)

From: duh via Seesat-l <>
Date: Wed, 09 Dec 2015 15:50:46 -0500
Reply/comment is bottom posted and much of original is

On 12/09/2015 01:19 AM, Skywayinc--- via Seesat-l wrote:
 > The only rationale that I can  come up with is that these fairing halves
 > were actually "much lower" than the  2nd stage Centaur as I viewed 
them. The
 > Centaur engine continued to burn for  another 14 minutes after 
fairing sep,
 > thereby speeding up & raising the  Centaur 2nd stage.  Also, perhaps 
the 2nd
 > stage was steered more towards  the NE as it was firing, while the 
 > halves continued their falling  trajectory along the coast. Anyway, 
 > the fairing halves "appeared to be  in front of the 2nd stage 
Centaur", from
 > my prospective observing  location.
 > Tom P.

Your rationale is indeed rational. :-)

You are unable to determine the range to the objects. The mind
of the observer puts its own interpetation in place for distance,
altitude, and velocity that seems acceptable to it (the mind, that
is). In a sense, the interpetation of the observer is an optical

Perhaps a similar effect happens if one can watch a time exposure
of a rocket launch from liftoff to going over the horizon. After
a certain point, the flight path may appear to be descending while
the vehicle is still climbing.

Just my thoughts. Interesting hearing of your experience.

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Received on Wed Dec 09 2015 - 14:51:34 UTC

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