Re: Cosmos 1220 - FYI

From: Mark Hanning-Lee (
Date: Fri May 18 2001 - 12:06:30 PDT

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    If a sat flares it will be brighter than a simple brightness model
    suggests. Several sats do this. The BWGS tracks flaring sats ...
    If its orientation and structure is known, Rob Matson & others can model
    that to predict flares.
    An extreme case: the Iridiums can flare from mag 5 up to mag -8, an
    increase of 13 mag! Before the spin information was known, that would
    have been quite an error in predicted brightness ;-).
    As was discussed a few years ago, rocket bodies can flare when the sun,
    the rocket, and the observer lie in the same plane. So I like keeping an
    eye on rocket body passes!
    Best, Mark
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