Re: Simultaneous Iridium flares

From: Edward S Light (
Date: Wed Mar 26 2003 - 13:10:16 EST

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    Earlier, in response to Robert Holdsworth's query, Björn Gimle suggested ...
    > One way is to run a large number of two-month runs with IridFlar, covering one
    > or more years and a number of latitudes, and let a program count the number of
    > coincidences (or coincidences within a minute and divide by 60).
    I just ran a simple experiment with IRIDFLAR and a current set of Iridium
    TLEs. For my coordinates ( 40.108 North, 74.231 West ), with faintest
    flare limits set at -4.0 mag in daytime [sun above horizon] and +1.5 mag
    at night, for 365 days starting today, and ignoring solar panel flares,
    of 1031 Iridium flares, there were 43 flare-pairs within 100 seconds, 14
    within 30 seconds, and just 4 within 5 seconds. (As may be expected from my
    selection criteria, the vast majority of these were nighttime flares.)
    While I doubt that IRIDFLAR (or, for that matter, any other software) can
    accurately propagate TLEs 12 months ahead, these results may indicate
    a very rough "ball park" estimate as to how frequent these doubles
    may be expected.
    Lack of time prevents me from trying the more extensive analysis outlined
    by Björn (I have just a 500 MHz machine), but I thought I'd share what I
    Clear and dark skies!
       Ed Light
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