Re: Re: Re: request for assistance

From: Anthony Ayiomamitis (
Date: Sat Aug 11 2001 - 11:03:24 PDT

  • Next message: Tony Beresford: "Re: tdrs"

    Jonathan T Wojack wrote:
    > >      As much as I like Heavens-Above, I would rule against this
    > > option for two reasons: first, the site provides ONLY the
    > > flare peak time with no indication of the start time of the flare
    > > which is equally as important (if not more)
    > What?  The flare starts a few seconds before its peak brightness, and
    > it
          Care to define "a few seconds"? I checked my list of predicted
    flares over the next three weeks created just last night and I see times
    ranging from 0 to 10 seconds before peak.
    > subsides to dim visibility a few seconds later (if you care to, you
    > can
    > track an Iridium flare naked-eye in light-polluted skies for many
    > seconds, even over a minute.  I've done it.).  They can start rolling
    > the
          This is something which I have also done as it is not a big deal
    to track an Iridium flare for a minute but this has nothing to do with
    the original point being made.
    > tape ten to twenty seconds before the peak - and they'll get the whole
    > flare.
          Personally I would like to know whether a given flare will start
    "x" seconds before the peak or "x+10" seconds before the peak,
    especially if the technology is there to do so. The observation of
    satellites is one of the few aspects of (amateur) astronomy where a few
    seconds can make or break an observing session. Yes, you can play it
    safe and start the tape 10 minutes earlier, for that matter, but then we
    turn aspects of this hobby which can be predicted with very good
    accuracy from a science to almost an art.
          Another point I would like to make is that it is very easy to
    impress upon the intended audience for whom such a tape is desired that
    these events can be predicted down to the last second. In fact, using
    SKYMAP as an example, estimates are provided to a tenth-of-a-second. In
    my opinion, this would add further value to any sort of "documentary"
    the Australian television folks may be looking  to produce.
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