GRACE 1 and 2

From: Pinizzotto,Russell (
Date: Wed Apr 24 2002 - 20:36:33 EDT

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    I watched GRACE 1 followed aapproximately 22 sec later by GRACE 2 (which
    agrees with a previous posting today about the separation) last night here
    in Northwestern Missouri.  The pass was from the north to the west, passing
    above Perseus and then along the side of Auriga at approximately 03:51 UT on
    24 April (22:51 CDT, 23 April).  My location is 40.35 N and 94.97 W at 330
    The reason for these details is that the satellites were BRIGHT!
    Heavens-Above predicted mag 7.0 for both of them.  In actuality, they were
    unaided eye objects at about the same mag as beta-Aur, which is 1.9!  Is
    this normal for this pair of satellites?  
    It was almost as good a pairing as watching the ISS and Shuttle last week
    from a brightly lit parking lot.  I'm glad I stayed to watch.  I almost had
    decided to wait and see them on another day.
    Best Regards,
    Russ Pinizzotto
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