Re: STS-114 final pass for Houston

From: Ed Cannon (ecannon@mail.utexas.edu)
Date: Sun Aug 07 2005 - 08:01:45 EDT

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    I was helped not to sleep through my alarm by an incredibly
    coincidentally timed unexpected but appreciated phone call 
    from a distant SeeSat-er -- the phone and the alarm rang at 
    the same time!
    
    The weather cooperated fairly well so that I was able to see 
    Discovery and ISS from outside my apartment.  I was very 
    gratified when I went outside and could see Mars, but there 
    were some clouds.  I then realized that I could see a bright 
    star farther west of Mars, which now looking at charts and 
    so on I think was alpha Andromedae (Sirrah).
    
    It seemed that both objects appeared almost simultaneously,
    but I'm not sure of that.
    
    Anyway, I attempted to time their separation twice, first 
    when they passed not too far from that star and farther 
    along as they passed the leaves at the end of a tree branch.  
    I got 28.29 and 28.65 seconds, respectively.
    
    They were not as different in magnitude as yesterday morning,
    but I was able to follow the ISS considerably lower in the 
    sky, between trees, than I was able to see Discovery.  It
    seemed to me that Discovery was similar in brightness to 
    Mars, but obviously a very different color.
    
    Ed Cannon - ecannon@mail.utexas.edu - Austin, Texas, USA
    
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