From: Bob Young <YoungBob2@aol.com> Date: Tue, 11 Jun 2002 16:14:07 EDT Fwd Date: Tue, 11 Jun 2002 22:46:40 -0400 Subject: Re: Alfred's Odd Observation #18 - Young >From: Alfred Lehmberg <Lehmberg@snowhill.com> >Date: Mon, 10 Jun 2002 16:07:17 -0500 >To: firstname.lastname@example.org >Subject: Alfred's Odd Observation #18 >Alfred's Odd Observation #18 (Monday -- June 10, 2002) >Like I said, ladies and gentlebunkies, just rock the freaking >head back! Visibility was about 80% of "as good as it gets" >around here this Monday morning <snip> >Three objects were observed this morning between 03:15 and 03:45 >Central, flying nearly one right after the other. All were the >same pale peach color. All maintained a slow steady one degree >every five seconds rate. All were observable over about 45 >degrees of arc along their different tracks. The first flew >north. The second flew south. The third flew a couple of degrees >to the left of due east and was the oddest of the three. >The first two shared a magnitude of about zero (so, dimmer than >Sirius) and maintained that bright component throughout their >observation. The third slowly increased its brilliance to as >bright as Jupiter (as seen the night before) and then abruptly dimmed to about magnitude three, barely visible and requiring >off center viewing to keep it in sight. >I checked with NASA via J-PASS for a forecast of traffic that '>should' be seen for the time period concerned (they make it >_so_ easy), and was not surprised to discover no record of it... >...All in all a vindication of a growing suspicion that things >are not as they appear, good friends and gentlebunkies... <snip> >At the end now, with no snippage on my part, that's enough. I >continue to watch our skies. Rock your own head back, when you >can, good reader. They continue to fly despite the carping, >complaining, and confusion that goes on down here. Read on. Mr. Lehmberg: Exactly which satellites did you request J-Track predictions for? Going to their website, I find the following, from the JTrack FAQ: http://liftoff.msfc.nasa.gov/realtime/JTrack/FAQ.html "Where is my favorite satellite? There are so many orbiting things that we had to choose a few to keep the list shorter. If you have one that is missing, just ask and we will add it as time permits. I saw something on some day, what was it? This is truly too difficult a task to expend resources to determine. If you MUST know, you can find historical ephemeris data on the internet for the space objects and search, but most likely you will never be sure what it really was unless you preplan the viewing. >From the J-Track Help page: http://liftoff.msfc.nasa.gov/realtime/JTrack/help.html At startup, J-Track only loads the default satellites. You can expand the list of satellites to choose from by clicking on the "Add More" button. Adding a Satellite - select a category of satellites, then select the satellites you wish to add to the tracking display. When they are selected click the "Add" button. You can only track 10 satellites." The J-Track webset has a database of only 500 satellites. The objects you saw certainly sound like satellites. The third one sounds like it might have been an iridium "flaring", or possibly a tumbling rocket. Many of the brighter (because they are larger and lower) satellites visible to the unaided eye are actually booster rockets in lock orbits. So, what was your list, and did it include boosters? Keep looking up but don't get a stiff neck. Bob Young "Nyuk, Nyuk ...Woop, Woop, Woop, Woop" Curley Howard, "Men in Black", 1934.
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