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General Astronomy >> General Observing and Astronomy

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T1R2
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 06/11/13

Loc: NeverWhere, 35*N
ALERT! bright object moving
      #6181845 - 11/07/13 09:13 PM

I'm observing a bright object moving east to west slowly across the sky, I'm at 35* lat., could it be the ESA's sat.?
Its 8:12 cst.


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obin robinson
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 10/25/12

Loc: League City, TX
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: T1R2]
      #6181862 - 11/07/13 09:22 PM

It's not GOCE. As of 8:22PM EST time it hasn't flown over North America. What is your longitude?

obin


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brentwood
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 11/04/05

Loc: BC Canada
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: obin robinson]
      #6181875 - 11/07/13 09:33 PM

Another example of why we should all have our approximate location showing in our profile.

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kfiscus
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 07/09/12

Loc: Albert Lea, MN, USA
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: brentwood]
      #6181917 - 11/07/13 10:01 PM

+1!

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mich_al
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 05/10/09

Loc: Rural central lower Michigan ...
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: brentwood]
      #6181958 - 11/07/13 10:30 PM

Quote:

Another example of why we should all have our approximate location showing in our profile.




Yep!


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T1R2
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 06/11/13

Loc: NeverWhere, 35*N
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: mich_al]
      #6182075 - 11/08/13 12:03 AM

well hit me with a brick why don't cha,..lol, I was trying to leave to the supermarket and was in a hurry, truthfully I have not known my long. since I have GPS, and I don't have a map, I guess I should memorize it for future reference, ..Little Rock, AR 92*

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T1R2
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 06/11/13

Loc: NeverWhere, 35*N
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: T1R2]
      #6182088 - 11/08/13 12:13 AM

so any ideas? I have not seen anything like that, not even the space station was as bright as this, I tried to estimate it at mag -2.5 or as bright or brighter than Jupiter, and yellow in color, and looked to be dimming and brightening irregularly like it was tumbling.

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Retsub
super member
*****

Reged: 12/08/06

Loc: Houston,Tx.
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: T1R2]
      #6182114 - 11/08/13 12:40 AM

Are you sure it was E to West ? Hmmm. A Cosmos or Tiangong would have been about that time but not very high. Slow ? About how many degrees in how many seconds ? Skies not very clear can make airplanes look like that. Best I can do for now. Thanks. *BW*

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T1R2
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 06/11/13

Loc: NeverWhere, 35*N
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: Retsub]
      #6182172 - 11/08/13 01:42 AM

yes it was e to w, slightly south of the celestial eq, moving 1* dps, I watched it for about 4-5min., then came in, it wasn't a plane, I've seen plenty of them and it had no flashers which would have given it away, no sound, only very high thin clouds but they were fairly broken and I had a good view of some clusters I was lookin at, it didn't look very high at all, it could of even been a giant space rock, its irregular reflective qualities indicates to me that it was tumbling., I don't think sats. tumble unless their getting ready to fall, and the only one I know of getting ready to fall is the GOCE, and if wasn't the GOCE then.......?

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BrooksObs
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/08/12

Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: T1R2]
      #6182453 - 11/08/13 08:39 AM

"...it didn't look very high at all, it could of even been a giant space rock, its irregular reflective qualities indicates to me that it was tumbling., I don't think sats. tumble unless their getting ready to fall, and the only one I know of getting ready to fall is the GOCE, and if wasn't the GOCE then.......?" - T1R2

Point number 1: It is utterly impossible to directly estimate the distance of an object at night without a known scale or frame of reference.

Point number 2: Space rocks (asteroids) are not seen passing across the sky as brilliant naked eye objects. The once in a million(s) years exception will have the end result of wiping out a goodly portion of civilization...so you'd know by now if that had happened!

Point number 3: Most satellites tumble when in orbit.

Point number 4: ALL very slow moving brilliant objects seen traversing the night sky which cannot be simply identified as aircraft of some sort are attributable to Earth-orbiting satellites. Their specific identification is best left to the viewer to determine. Without the observer's known location it is not very likely a firm ID can be made as there will be dozens, if not hundreds, of potential choices.

BrooksObs

Edited by BrooksObs (11/08/13 08:42 AM)


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T1R2
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 06/11/13

Loc: NeverWhere, 35*N
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: BrooksObs]
      #6183432 - 11/08/13 06:25 PM

point 3, I don't think that's correct, spin maybe, but not tumble end over end. thanks for your input, if you care to explain please feel free, as far as "it didn't look very high" let me explain, all sats I've seen through my scope look like little dim stars moving at a pretty good rate of speed, and since brightness is relative to size and distance(at least in our neck of the woods)it was not as far up as other sats, but its speed was slow almost like an airplane at 30-40K in alt no plane has lights that equal a -2.5 or greater mag. planet at that alt. and since it was at 8:22pm at night, the sun was well down, and it wouldn't have illuminated anything that was inside or atmosphere, only an space bound object.

Point 2, please explain

Point 4, I'm well aware of that, just having a little fun, I was going on the assumption that all sats were accounted for, what else is out there, besides rocks and junk?

Edit: could they have been moving HST?

Edited by T1R2 (11/08/13 06:26 PM)


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Thomas Karpf
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 02/09/09

Loc: Newington, CT
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: T1R2]
      #6183614 - 11/08/13 08:33 PM

Quote:


Point 2, please explain





At that speed it would have had to have been HUGE. Unlikely in the extreme that it was a very close near miss or there would have been huge numbers of reports.


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T1R2
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 06/11/13

Loc: NeverWhere, 35*N
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: Thomas Karpf]
      #6183679 - 11/08/13 09:11 PM

it was big, just cause no one reported it doesn't mean it was not seen by others, some without an astronomy background could of easily not though anything of it. I'm aware that there are things flying out there that remain undetected, lots of people don't know who to report it to nor would even bother with it

as for me I'm fine with the satellite theory, but I also know that there large NEO's orbiting our earth/moon system with orbits as far out or as close as 500K miles to 1 million out, not saying this was one of those, but its always possible one got away.

every time I'm out observing I witness multiple objects that are close, some far away, either sats, astroids, space junk, sometimes even in the same FOV only min. apart going in different directions, I've even seen meteor's streak by in the ep, moved the scope to a different part of the sky, only to have it happen again, that's a 1/1000000 chance, I'm sure others have witnessed similar things.

but since no one wants to play, I guess I'm done.
no need to worry about large rocks in space that may have came near our planet, or sats falling out of the sky, lord knows that could never happen, specially twice in a day.


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Retsub
super member
*****

Reged: 12/08/06

Loc: Houston,Tx.
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: Thomas Karpf]
      #6183688 - 11/08/13 09:17 PM

Sorry but I can't find anything that was near you, especially that late. Nothing earlier or later than the time you wrote. Didn't find anything on your local news either. Not much else I can say about it. From 29-95 thanks. *BW*

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T1R2
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 06/11/13

Loc: NeverWhere, 35*N
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: Retsub]
      #6183708 - 11/08/13 09:38 PM

Thanks, earlier I got to look at the GOCE orbit and it was not that, I was satisfied with the sat theory, but now I've changed my mind to a large asteroid flyby seeing as to no sats were in the area, it was not a plane and it was large, bright and slow and its irregular brightening and dimming suggests tumbling, and since nothing else has a deteriorating orbit that's supposed to be coming down, I don't see how it could be anything else.

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BrooksObs
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/08/12

Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: T1R2]
      #6184232 - 11/09/13 08:58 AM

Quote:

it was big, just cause no one reported it doesn't mean it was not seen by others, some without an astronomy background could of easily not though anything of it. I'm aware that there are things flying out there that remain undetected, lots of people don't know who to report it to nor would even bother with it

as for me I'm fine with the satellite theory, but I also know that there large NEO's orbiting our earth/moon system with orbits as far out or as close as 500K miles to 1 million out, not saying this was one of those, but its always possible one got away.




1. Today, with the sky being intensely monitored 24-7 by both dozens and dozens of advanced amateurs with sophisticated instrumentation, as well as by some professional installations, be assured that the average hobbyist frequenting these forums has absolutely a zero chance of spotting something very bright anywhere in the sky that is as yet undiscovered.

2. There are absolutely no "large NEO's orbiting our Earth/moon system". Seaches for same, those employing deep imaging for decades, have demonstated that no significant-sized such bodies currently exist that can very closely approach Earth. Those few objects in "locked" revolution with Earth are all tiny and require huge instruments just to be detected.

3. Any asteroidal body appearing as bright as implied in the initial post(s) would have had to be physically enormous and have been discovered and under observation for weeks (if not years!), not spotted last night simply by chance.

BrooksObs

Edited by BrooksObs (11/09/13 10:23 AM)


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T1R2
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 06/11/13

Loc: NeverWhere, 35*N
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: BrooksObs]
      #6184971 - 11/09/13 04:05 PM

Well I see your pretty good at telling people what it "IS NOT", just like on another thread! how about being useful and help narrow down what it was, seeing that was intent of the post, What about the Russian meteor! didn't that just come outa nowhere! even with all these detection systems and solar AP'ers out there! I'll never be gullible enough to believe that we know everything that's out there on any givin sunday!

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maugi88
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 08/25/13

Loc: SE MN
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: BrooksObs]
      #6185107 - 11/09/13 05:17 PM

Quote:

Quote:

it was big, just cause no one reported it doesn't mean it was not seen by others, some without an astronomy background could of easily not though anything of it. I'm aware that there are things flying out there that remain undetected, lots of people don't know who to report it to nor would even bother with it

as for me I'm fine with the satellite theory, but I also know that there large NEO's orbiting our earth/moon system with orbits as far out or as close as 500K miles to 1 million out, not saying this was one of those, but its always possible one got away.




1. Today, with the sky being intensely monitored 24-7 by both dozens and dozens of advanced amateurs with sophisticated instrumentation, as well as by some professional installations, be assured that the average hobbyist frequenting these forums has absolutely a zero chance of spotting something very bright anywhere in the sky that is as yet undiscovered.

2. There are absolutely no "large NEO's orbiting our Earth/moon system". Seaches for same, those employing deep imaging for decades, have demonstated that no significant-sized such bodies currently exist that can very closely approach Earth. Those few objects in "locked" revolution with Earth are all tiny and require huge instruments just to be detected.

3. Any asteroidal body appearing as bright as implied in the initial post(s) would have had to be physically enormous and have been discovered and under observation for weeks (if not years!), not spotted last night simply by chance.

BrooksObs




I will never understand how anyone could tell anyone else what they saw or didn't see. If someone is giving the best description they possibly can and it doesn't mesh with what you know, that is no reason to call someone a liar.

Just my opinion.


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Qwickdraw
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 03/03/12

Loc: Ann Arbor, MI
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: brentwood]
      #6186083 - 11/10/13 08:29 AM

Quote:

Another example of why we should all have our approximate location showing in our profile.




This is because there is not already enough personal info about me on the internet?


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Cotts
Just Wondering
*****

Reged: 10/10/05

Loc: Toronto, Ontario
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: Qwickdraw]
      #6186206 - 11/10/13 10:04 AM

You said,
"...every time I'm out observing I witness multiple objects that are close, some far away...."

Unfortunately, one cannot tell how far away a point of light is as it travels across the sky. There is no frame of reference. Is it a small object close by or a bright object further away? You have no way of knowing this. Your space rock theory suffers from this problem as we don't know whether it might have been a large object far away or a small object nearby, relatively.

Based upon the brightness you report, the E-W path, the speed (1 deg/sec) and the brightness variations (but no blinking lights) the most likely scenario is a man-made orbiting satellite.

The asteroid/space rock theory is much less likely. As pointed out before there are no asteroids orbiting the Earth-Moon system that are large enough to be seen naked eye. Earth does have some Trojan companions but, again, they are very far away (much further than the moon) and very tiny. Objects like these have magnitudes down in the 15th -20th magnitude range....

As for a Chelyabinsk-sized object, your reported speed of 1 deg/sec is far too slow if it were near enough to be seen that brightly - the Chelyabinsk rock crossed about 150 degrees of sky in about 5 seconds! If a Chelyabinsk-sized object were far enough away to be moving at only a degree a second it couldn't be as bright as you say.

Consider a school bus sized space rock passing us at a distance of about 35000 miles, the same distance as the geosynchronous satellites which is a reasonable distance for an asteroid moving at about 1 deg / sec in the sky. The geo-synch satellites, made of very shiny, reflective metal are all no brighter than magnitude 5 and most are mag 8 or fainter. A space rock is unlikely to have an albedo anywhere nearly as 'shiny' and will, therefore, have no chance of being any brighter than the brightest geo-synch satellite even if it is quite a bit larger. If the school bus space rock were, in fact, as bright as you say it would be huge - kilometres in size and be a well known near-Earth asteroid.

T1, it is difficult to narrow down what an object might be without ruling out certain things. Things that are highly unlikely need to be pointed out. Folks here are trying to help you, based upon their knowledge and experience. Unfortunately, pointing out unlikely scenarios comes across as excess negativity. An unintended consequence.

All of us would love to see something unique and fantastic in the sky - a nova, a previously unknown object etc. I certainly would! In this hobby we are out a lot, looking up, and we frequently see stuff that, at first blush, has a chance to be something special. Unfortunately mundane explanations win out virtually 100% of the time.

Dave


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BrooksObs
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/08/12

Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: T1R2]
      #6186238 - 11/10/13 10:21 AM

Quote:

Well I see your pretty good at telling people what it "IS NOT", just like on another thread! how about being useful and help narrow down what it was, seeing that was intent of the post, What about the Russian meteor! didn't that just come outa nowhere! even with all these detection systems and solar AP'ers out there! I'll never be gullible enough to believe that we know everything that's out there on any givin sunday!




A response as to what it is not is about all that can be offered with certainty in situations such as this and most others not easily or immediately linked to the ISS, an Iridium satellite, or something similar.

What about the Russian meteorite? So what about it? It was a mere 40-odd feet in diameter. Outside the Earth's atmosphere it would have appeared as a minute speck telescopically and vastly fainter than any nakedeye star, even just an hour or two before the encounter. Within the atmosphere it would become a brilliant object reported by thousands.

People are forever seeing "bright moving objects" in the skies these days. But virtually zero of them turn out to be truly celestial in nature. Nearly all can be accounted for by aircraft of some sort, or satellites. Unless an OP can can offer a rather detailed account, together with his location and time, and also eliminate the possibility of aircraft being involved, then it will be far easier to define what an object is not, rather than to say for sure what it was. Simply checking a satellite passage website himself, the observer can confirm, or eliminate, satellites and that leaves only aircraft..like it or not.

BrooksObs

Edited by BrooksObs (11/10/13 10:25 AM)


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brentwood
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 11/04/05

Loc: BC Canada
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: Qwickdraw]
      #6186599 - 11/10/13 01:12 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Another example of why we should all have our approximate location showing in our profile.




This is because there is not already enough personal info about me on the internet?




No, because it can in some instances, help others to respond to your posts. I've seen many examples where I could have added to the conversation but didn't as my response may not have been applicable depending on where the poster was located. If you think that adding 'Central USA', 'Southern England' or 'West Africa' is too revealing then don't.


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T1R2
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 06/11/13

Loc: NeverWhere, 35*N
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: Cotts]
      #6187335 - 11/10/13 06:55 PM

when I said some close, some far, I was going by my assumption that a lot of space rocks, move fast, 20-40k mph, I've seen sats in my ep and they usually move across my med power FOV (1.7*)in 1-3sec. I've seen objects in my scope along the ecliptic that literally take up to 5min in the fov. and would not have been noticed if my eye was not glued to the ep. if those are moving 20-40K mph, then their very far away and so that is my reference. Is my assumption wrong in this? and my 1*sec was concervative it may very well have been .5* sec, I watched it for at least 10 min, maybe longer from the horizon to directly on the meridian, then it went behind some trees it took at least another 10 or more min to get to the other horizon, the Chelyabinsk meteor was in our atmosphere, that's why it covered 150* in 5sec. this was not, it didn't burn up, it remained for the most time a Yellow-ish, Jupiter magnitude object moving at .5 to 1* sec. I was more than happy to think it was a sat. but there were no sats in the area, maybe it was a flying turkey with a floodlight pointed at me, it couldn't have been anything else.

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EJN
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 11/01/05

Loc: 53 miles west of Venus
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: T1R2]
      #6187406 - 11/10/13 07:44 PM

Quote:

Well I see your pretty good at telling people what it "IS NOT", just like on another thread! how about being useful and help narrow down what it was, seeing that was intent of the post, What about the Russian meteor! didn't that just come outa nowhere! even with all these detection systems and solar AP'ers out there! I'll never be gullible enough to believe that we know everything that's out there on any givin sunday!




Uh, are you aware that BrooksObs has 50+ years experience in amateur astronomy, wrote a monthly
column for an astronomy magazine for ~20 years, and generally has more knowledge that any
dozen typical members here combined?

I live 10 miles from O'Hare International airport, and 2 miles from a general aviation airport
and constantly see all sorts of weird lights in the sky. An airplane almost moving directly away
from you can look very slow moving. Binoculars quickly reveal whether it is an airplane or a
satellite or space debris; those don't have strobes or red lights. Also a high altitude weather
balloon can look extremely bright, and nearly stationary.


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T1R2
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 06/11/13

Loc: NeverWhere, 35*N
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: EJN]
      #6187434 - 11/10/13 07:58 PM

Um, are you aware that I don't care, I'm not an idiot, I know the dif, between a plane and a weather balloon(in AR?), it was not stationary, it was mag -2.5, and moving .5-1* sec. e to w near the ecliptic

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T1R2
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 06/11/13

Loc: NeverWhere, 35*N
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: T1R2]
      #6187559 - 11/10/13 09:13 PM

Moderator could you please lock the thread, its becoming to snippy and opinionated, I've got enough info to draw my own conclusion that it was a satellite, and I am guilty of "baiting" on a few posts myself, sorry form the inconvenience.

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panhardModerator
It's All Good
*****

Reged: 01/20/08

Loc: Markham Ontario Canada
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: T1R2]
      #6187655 - 11/10/13 10:05 PM

Lets keep this thread civil. Here is quote from the tos.
Quote:

* Play Nice
* Share
* Be Polite
* Be Honest
* Respect other members & the administrators and moderators who are working to keep this board a useful resource.




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bwirth1999
member


Reged: 12/13/12

Loc: Belvidere, IL
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: Cotts]
      #6188279 - 11/11/13 10:14 AM

I have seen many objects like this. You can clearly see it is tumbling. Though not nearly as bright as you say it was, as it was too small or too faint to see naked eye. One night I was trying to get Sombrero Galaxy to show, and about 5 minutes into it, I see this tiny looking object floating VERY slowly through the field. You could see it tumbling as I would get irregular flashes of light, a bit brighter than most of the stars which were visible. I have an f/5 scope at around 60x magnification at the time of seeing this thing. I probably took 5 minutes or so to cross the field of view, all while flashing at me.
After wards I pulled up any and all info on satellites and known objects and found nothing. I chalked it up to random space debris. But still not so sure. I would estimate it was traveling from NW to S SE...

This is why we all need some sort of video camera plugged in at all times..


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bandhunter
super member
*****

Reged: 12/01/09

Loc: North Carolina
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: bwirth1999]
      #6188437 - 11/11/13 11:47 AM

Saw an object this morning, similar to brightness between the magnitudes of Mars and jupiter (currently) moving from SW to NE just after 5 am. This objects brightness did not flare but was consistent until it was near the horizon, and though it was dimmer it could be seen to the horizon. I followed it with 28mm SW eye piece in the WO for 15 seconds or so and it had a stellar appearance. It appeared orange in color and was moving a little slower than other satellites I've seen through an eyepiece. Looked at some satellite paths/predictions and none come close to moving in that particular direction. There are all kinds of things out there. Can most be explained? sure but the unknown is exciting.

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Steve OK
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 09/22/07

Loc: OKC, OK
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: bandhunter]
      #6188664 - 11/11/13 01:40 PM

I checked Heavens Above website, and they show an ISS pass for you just after 5:00 AM, low in the SE sky. For your location, I entered "North Carolina". That might be what you saw.

Steve

Edited by Steve OK (11/11/13 01:42 PM)


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choran
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 12/28/12

Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: Steve OK]
      #6188974 - 11/11/13 04:29 PM

I saw the ISS at -3.3 magnitude at 5:15 this AM in Southern California.
In my neck of the woods it travelled SSW to NNE, as I recall. Very nice! I got up early just to see it. Also tried to see (but failed) a pair that travels together, 229DEB and companion, but sky was a bit too bright by then.
One will be crashing some time in December, so I want to get a last look while they are still flying in tandem. They are my favorites.


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bandhunter
super member
*****

Reged: 12/01/09

Loc: North Carolina
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: choran]
      #6190071 - 11/12/13 07:15 AM

Thanks Steve. I think your right. I just thought if it was the space station it would have looked more irregular in the scope, at least a hint. I saw the station on another occasion and it was closer to zenith. The views were similar however so another object identified. I'm going to have to use that heavens above site.

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Steve OK
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 09/22/07

Loc: OKC, OK
Re: ALERT! bright object moving new [Re: bandhunter]
      #6190889 - 11/12/13 03:05 PM

When the ISS is near the zenith, it is about 260 miles away. When it is closer to the horizon, it is alot farther. Looking at the CalSky website (another good reference for ISS sighting, including lunar and solar transits) when the ISS is only 1.7° above the horizon, it is about 1400 miles away. You didn't say (or I missed it) how high up it was when you observed it, but it could have been too far away to see much detail.

Steve


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