The GRACEs

From: Tom Wagner (sciteach@mchsi.com)
Date: Thu Apr 25 2002 - 23:31:06 EDT

  • Next message: Tom Wagner: "Re: Much ado about a NOSS triangle"

    SeeSaters,
    
    My boy and I just watched GRACE-1 and GRACE-2 pass Polaris and the pointer
    stars in the "Big Dipper". I had my 5 inch Celestron set up using a 40mm
    eyepiece. A few seconds before the time that Grace-1 was supposed to cross
    very close to Polaris, my son, who was using 7 x 35 mm binoculars hollered,
    "There it is!" "It's getting close to the north star and..........there it
    goes."  With much anticipation I was watching through the telescope. At the
    moment that Grace-1 was to pass, it did. Nice, nice, nice!  <Please forgive
    my lack of technical lingo. :~)  Clear as a bell it was. <Now I'm beginning
    to sound like Yoda.
    
    It had the common reddish glow and was, as far as I could tell, at least a
    magnitude brighter than Polaris. A short time later Grace-2 appeared in our
    area of attention, crossing by Polaris as well. My son said he could see
    Grace-1 without the binocs.
    
    Soon after passing Polaris, each satellite dimmed substantially before
    fading into the earth's shadow. They faded considerably long before reaching
    the shadow of the earth however.
    
    Clear skies and bright satellites,
    
    Tom W.
    NE Iowa
    USA
    
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