Re: ISS Magnitude, Atlas 5 Fairing

From: Art Glick (
Date: Sun Jul 20 2003 - 16:48:38 EDT

  • Next message: Tom Wagner: "Re: ISS Magnitude, Atlas 5 Fairing"

    Like most of you, I have also noticed significant differences between the 
    magnitudes reported by H-A and those that I've observed.
    After years of depending on H-A, I just downloaded Mike McCants' Quicksat, 
    and I want to take the opportunity to thank Mike publicly for making this 
    code available in the public domain.  As an old DOShead myself, Mike, I can 
    tell you that the elegant simplicity of your code is much appreciated.
    To all the rest of you still using H-A exclusively (it's good "in a 
    pinch"), I downloaded Mike's program for two reasons.  First, no matter how 
    I try, I can't "fool" H-A to display past Mag 5.  You can change the last 
    part of the URL all you want, but typing anything in over Mag 5 still 
    results in no more than that.  Here in the mountains of West Virginia we 
    can get down to Mag 6 (1X that is!) easily on a good night.
    Besides, if H-A is going to routinely underestimate magnitudes anyway, 
    they're going to leave out a bunch of stuff that I might be able to see.  I 
    especially enjoy the multiples e.g. NOSS, which are often right in that range.
    As for magnitudes, and those of you that have noted the discrepancies re: 
    ISS, you should know that Quicksat (with the accompanying quicksat.mag) is 
    much more accurate, too.  On two ISS passes tonight, H-A lists the mags as 
    0.6 and 1.4, as compared to Mike's -1.3 and -0.4 respectively.  From 
    experience, we all know who's more accurate, don't we?
    By the way, the second (and main) reason that I downloaded Quicksat was so 
    that I could add TLE's that are posted in this list to my predictions.  H-A 
    doesn't add them as quickly, and Mike couldn't have made them easier to add 
    to Quicksat (unless you don't know how to use Wordpad or an equivalent!).
    I was interested in seeing parts of the recent Atlas 5 that was 
    launched.  It had an awfully large fairing around the upper stage.  I 
    didn't even know if anything that big would make it to orbit, but I knew 
    that it wouldn't last too long, and that I wouldn't have much of a chance 
    of seeing without using TLE's posted to this list.
    I saw two items listed here (27852 & 27853), but alas, no passes at my 
    Thanks, Mike, for making it possible to check!
    Best Regards,
    Almost Heaven Group
    HC 67  Box 539 BB
    Renick  WV  24966
    Phone 304-497-2610
    Fax 304-497-2698
    Offering direct sales of Saunas, Steamrooms
    and the widest selection of Pool, Spa, Sauna
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