Re: Sunangle and skymap

From: Björn Gimle (
Date: Wed Mar 06 2002 - 01:24:25 EST

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    > GMT). I set up my 16 x 70 binos and looked for any flashes in the region
    > found none in about half hours search. Are none of these sats flashing for
    > India? How does one know when flashes occur? Is there any preffered sun
    > angle?
    The geometry that causes this phenomenon is based on the following
    1. The satellite is geostationary, i.e. in circular orbit with MM=1.0027 and
    2. It is operationally stabilized to point its solar panel normals near the
    3. The panel normals are fixed at declination 0, but follow the Sun in R.A.
    This means that if the Sun's declination is "near" the declination of the
    Clarke belt (-8 from 60N) the satellites often flare near the R.A. of 12h +
    Sun's R.A.
    You don't really have to know which satellites to look at - just find the
    most likely place, and keep watching it as the rotating Earth shifts it
    (about 2.5 degrees/h in R.A., 18 degrees/h or more in R.A.
    Use SkyMap (Rob Matson) to find where to look.
    See instructions and an example with screenshot and .cfg file at
    -- (office)                         --
    -- (home) --
    -- COSPAR 5919, MALMA,    59.2576 N, 18.6172 E, 23 m         --
    -- COSPAR 5918, HAMMARBY, 59.2985 N, 18.1045 E, 44 m         --
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