Re: HST double flare over Houston

From: Robert Reeves (
Date: Sun Jul 03 2005 - 19:22:42 EDT

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    I have seen the HST flare on a number of occasions (but never a double
    and I think one prime candidate would be the flat back surface (where the
    prime mirror is located). This offers the exciting possiblity of figuring
    where the HST was looking at when the flare occurred. Assuming your -4 flare
    at 21:35:30 was caused this way the back surface would have been pointing at
    RA 5h34m, Decl 1844' and the HST observations done at the time would then
    in the opposite direction of the sky. Does anybody know whether there is a
    website to find out where the HST was pointing at during that time to test
    this hypothesis?
    Gerhard HOLTKAMP
    Darmstadt, Germany
    I think you are right about the flat "bottom" of the spacecraft being the
    source of the HST flares.  Several years ago after some discussion
    about Hubble flares here on this list, an engineer from Marshal Space Flight
    Center called me at work and "chewed the fat" with me about these flares.
    I forget what his name was, be unofficially decided the flat bottom was the
    source.  The solar panels are just not flat enough to cause the bright
    Back before my observatory was blasted into oblivion by a thunderstorm,
    I actually saw a shadow on the floor of the observatory from a bright Hubble
    flare shining through the open dome slot.  This was about 10 years ago.
    It caught me by surprise.
    Robert Reeves                 +29.484   98.440       San Antonio, Texas
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