Re: Newbie Query: Seeing Geostationary Sats

From: Bjoern Gimle (
Date: Fri Aug 03 2001 - 09:43:42 PDT

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    Most operational geostationary satellites are stabilized so that they show a
    faily constant brightness of +12 to +15 - out of reach for your instruments
    (and mine!) - except near equinoxes, close to shadow entry and exit. OTOH,
    non-operational geosynch satellites often tumble, so they can reach
    magnitude +1 to +8 in flashes!
    Depending on the orientation of the rotation axis, the reflecting surfaces
    and the Sun, the time and duration of the flashing period can vary
    I like to determine the orientations and make predictions, but to do that I
    need observations from more than one latitude, or over a large part of the
    year, of time and/or location of exceptional flashes.
    Lacking that, you will have to follow SeeSat-L reports, and make your own
    guesses of when and where those will be visible.
    -- (office)                         --
    -- (home) --
    -- COSPAR 5919, MALMA,    59.2576 N, 18.6172 E, 23 m         --
    -- COSPAR 5918, HAMMARBY, 59.2985 N, 18.1045 E, 44 m         --
    > Can the geosynchronous satellites be seen? I have 15 X 65 bino and a 4
    > reflector. Can I see the geosynch sats?
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