What Did I See?

From: Art Glick (omb00900@mail.wvnet.edu)
Date: Mon Jun 21 2010 - 15:59:17 UTC

  • Next message: Art Glick: "What Did I See?"

    Hey All,
    During some informal viewing (doesn't everyone else on this list tilt 
    their head back any time they might be walking around outside at 
    night?), I spotted a very low flying satellite that's not in Heaven's Above.
    I was in an unfamiliar location (not far from here - use the lat/long 
    below), so can only provide rough details.  Its path was roughly 
    south to north, and it passed very close to zenith (within 10 degrees 
    of due overheard, in my estimation).  I'd put it's magnitude at around 1 to 0.
    Man, this bird was screaming.  One of the fastest I've ever seen 
    during my 50 years of casual observing.  It was moving so fast that I 
    looked to see if it might be leaving a plasma trail from atmospheric 
    contact!  Didn't see anything like that, but I was in a fairly 
    brightly lit location.
    I looked at my cell phone at the moment of its zenith, and it read 
    9:44 PM (that's DST, by the way).
    Interestingly enough, on the same evening that I saw what must be one 
    of the lowest LEOs of the night, I happened to see what must be one 
    of the highest LEOs!  At 9:58, I happened to look up and saw a near 
    zenith pass of Cosmos 1378 which currently flies at well over 500 km.
    What a remarkable difference in the apparent velocities of these two 
    objects!  Hard to believe that their actual velocities can't be that 
    far apart, from just observing them transit the sky.
    I'd sure like to know what the first one was, though.  Anybody have any ideas?
    Best Regards and Clear Skies to All,
    Art Glick
    Lewisburg  WV  USA
    +37.798  -80.443, 2165' above MSL
    Almost Heaven Group LLC
    Offering direct sales of Saunas, Steamrooms
    and the widest selection of Pool, Spa, Sauna
    and Hot Tub Equipment .
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