Delta II/Iridium Launch

Brian Webb (102670.1206@compuserve.com)
Sun, 17 May 1998 22:30:56 -0400

I watched the launch from Santa Ynez Peak (4,200 feet above sea level, 24.9
miles from the pad). The weather was clear with quite a bit of haze on the
horizon. We were lucky to have an audio feed of the countdown.

At liftoff, we didn't see anything. At about T+ 4 seconds, we saw the intense
orange light from the solid rocket motors. Through my 135mm telephoto lens I
could see the vehicle gather speed as it climbed.

The bright orange light suddenly got brighter as the last solid rocket motors
were ignited about T+ 45 seconds. We saw the delta for about 3-1/2 minutes.

It was great.

Regards,

Brian Webb, KD6NRP
Thousand Oaks, California