Iridium flashes and eyes defects

Willie Koorts (
Tue, 10 Feb 1998 14:02:11 +0200 (GMT+0200)

Hi Folks

I had my first monster (-7) Iridium flare last night and I am not even going
to try and describe it here since my comprehension of the English language is
not anywhere near good enough to do justice to it. I could perhaps just say
that I mentioned it to a few neighbours beforehand and quite unexpectantly,
about 10 minutes before the time they came over and in the end we were 6
people who all witnessed it. They were most impressed that one could predict
this so exactly and I gave you lot the honour for this. 

I have noticed something that I have not seen discussed here yet - or 
maybe it is just me?  When it got to maximum brightness it became very
"spikey" to me - almost like diffraction spikes when viewing bright 
stars in an obstructed telescope,  just not as simetrical.

My best explenasion is that it is the aberrations in one's eyes that 
starts to show - as the eye/brain is trying to make sence out of this 
bright pinpoint of light.  

What are your experiences/explenasions on this?

                        Willie Koorts   

       Cape Town,  Observatory   33d 56' 03"S   18d 28' 36"E   GMT + 2h
       Wellington, South Africa  33d 38' 56"S   19d 00' 52"E   GMT + 2h

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