Re: Iridium flare was slow

From: Robert G Fenske Jr (
Date: Mon Jan 14 2002 - 18:22:45 EST

  • Next message: Tom Wagner: "animated iridium"

    On Sun, 13 Jan 2002, Tom  Wagner wrote:
    > Being quite ignorant of the geometry of these occurrences, can someone tell
    > me if there are times when one can expect the flare to be more gradual and
    > expect the satellite to move more slowly. Like, are the later ones more apt
    > to be this way?
    	The darkness of the sky can certainly make a difference.  On Jan. 05
    I saw my first Iridium flare from a very dark sky.  I was out in Big Bend
    Nat'l Park in W. Texas.  After a peak of about +1 I watched Iridium 18 slowly
    fade, over what seemed to be a *very* long time, down to it's nominal
    brightness (+5-6 range).  I was able to follow it until it went behind the
    mountains.  In my usual +4 limiting mag skies I simply can't watch them fade
    for all that long.  It was fun to see an Iridium satellite at its non-flare
    brightness with the naked eye.
    Robert Fenske, Jr.    Sw     |The Taming the C*sm*s series:
    Southwest Research Institute            /R---\  |
    Signal Exploitation & Geolocation Div  | I    | |"The Martian canals were the
    San Antonio,Texas USA  ph:210-522-3931  \----/  | Martians' last ditch effort."
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