Re: Admin: policy for reporting high resolutionground-basedimageryofEarth satellites

From: Greg Roberts (
Date: Sun Aug 15 2010 - 11:50:29 UTC

  • Next message: Jim Nix: "JN 9633 obs Aug 15 and PPAS"

    Hi Ralf ( and the list)
    I certainly do appreciate your skills - especially since I know I could not achieve the same - thats why I dont even bother to try.
    I think "suspicious" is too strong a word to use - as Ted has said its a new field and it is well known that image processing can produce excellant results but also sometimes something totally unrealistic - Ive seen images of, for example, Mars taken with small instruments and heavily processed to show the elusive "canals" which could not possibly have been resolved with such small instruments. Ive done some image processing in my professional career and no two people will process an image in exactly the same way and each will end with an image that may sometimes not bear much common resemblance. In the case of ISS it is possible to confirm real features but for other, smaller, satellites where one does not have many photographs etc to check against there is always the nagging possibility that something may not be 100% correct.
    As regards your feeling of not being fully accepted by the group - I think that all newcomers to SeeSat have this feeling - I know I certainly did in my "early" days and I know of several others who felt the same way. Some had a rough ride initially (wont mention names but they know who they are!) and several disappeared but if you stick it out you will be fully accepted.
    I agree with your comment re others processing your raw data - you have been doing it for years and I certainly dont think you are being arrogant.You have the experience and know exactly what you are doing.
    Finally re a manual for the list ---- at this stage I would not contemplate this if I were you. I doubt if 99% of the readers would take a serious look at it. Whilst SeeSat has a lot of subscribers only a very small percentage are active . If anyone is interested in pursuing your particular interest I am sure they would contact you off-list and if they are REALLY interested and motivated to try then one could go into the finer points. 
    I see Ted has replied to the comments by Paul Grace re positional and orbit determination so I wont add anything to this other than support Teds comments, especially that the observers in this field report their raw observations and the software for doing this is readily available. For those wanting to process the raw observations to derive orbital elements the software is also readily available so I dont think Pauls comparison with high-resolution imagery is a valid one.
    Anyway Ive had more than my 2c worth -- everybody knows I "talk" too much so I think I will henceforth shut-up on this topic and stick to things I know a little about :-))
    Best wishes
      ----- Original Message ----- 
      From: Ralf Vandebergh 
      To: Greg Roberts ; 
      Sent: Saturday, August 14, 2010 6:11 PM
      Subject: Re: Admin: policy for reporting high resolutionground-basedimageryofEarth satellites
      Hi Greg, list,
      Frankly, this is the way of communication I'm looking for. This is showing some
      appreciation and that's the way we should communicate, instead of not reply
      on the observations but get suspecious about imagery without asking about things
      I hate feeling not fully been accepted to the list but at the same time have to
      function as the teacher. Setting up a policy while there is just one person posting?
      I fully agree with you about the 'black magic' problem. The reason that I mention
      not much about hardware or software is mainly because nobody is asking!
      When posting an observation to a satellite observations list, I try to provide
      what is interesting for most of the observers, namely images of an object 
      which they would like to see in higher resolution. So when there is interest,
      simply show it rather then sitting down and getting suspecious.
      Additionally, to add something to the matter providing rawframes; 
      When anyone can apply their processing on it, while most preople
      haven't the experience imaging and processing high res satellite images,
      why would their own processing be more reliable then the original
      result provided by the experienced imager itself? Sorry when this sounds
      a little arrogantly but it's true.
      Often, I try to show a rawframe together with the processed image,
      and with processing is mostly meant, combining more frames to
      get better signal to noise ratio. That this not always leads to better
      images is proved in this observation:
      This message would get to long when explaining the whole technique, but
      when there is sufficient interest from people, seriously interested in
      this matterm, I will consider to provide a manual to the list.
      Best regards,
      Ralf Vandebergh
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