RE: A question regarding timing

From: Matson, Robert (
Date: Wed Feb 14 2001 - 11:41:09 PST

  • Next message: Alan Pickup: "Decay watch; 2001 Feb 14"

    Dale Ireland wrote in part:
    > ... I have done lunar occultation timing for years, starting with the
    stopwatch method.
    > Careful studies showed that while many people "thought" they were getting
    0.1 second
    > or less accuracy they always were around 0.3 second accuracy. Just nerve
    > and muscle contraction takes significant time.
    I agree.  0.1-second accuracy for a one-time event (e.g. star
    blink-out, or worse yet star blink-on) would be pretty impressive
    (read "unbelievable") reaction time.
    In satellite flash timing, however, flash period accuracy of
    0.1-second or better can be achieved since the individual's
    relatively constant reaction time is taken out of the equation.
    For flash periods under 15 seconds, I would also contend that
    anticipation permits relatively high accuracy in the flash
    times themselves -- not just the periods.
    And of course by timing multiple flashes, the flash period can
    often be determined to better than a hundredth of a second.
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