Re: HELP: Strange cloud back in April.

Ron Lee (
Thu, 09 Sep 1999 20:46:31 -0600

A Titan/IUS was launched on 9 April at 1701 UT from Florida.  
I have never seen a solid rocket burn but it is at the top of my
wish list. Well, maybe second after seeing a re-entry of a rocket
or payload that breaks up.

I suspect that a solid rocket would eject particulate matter that, if
sunlit, might behave as you described.  I will take this chance
to once again plead, beg, and whimper for advance notice of any
solid rocket burn (geosynchronous is fine).

Ron Lee

 Amateur astronomers and
>general public as well observed from Sao Carlos, Brazil (22 deg 01' S,
>47 deg 54' W, elevation 850 m) the apparition of a strange ball-like
>white cloud on Friday April 9, 1999 at aproximatelly 23:30 UTC (20:30
>local). The small round cloud appeared at about 28 deg Alt, 290 deg Az
>(in Orion, between the "Orion Belt" and Betelgeuse), grew larger and
>turned into a smoky ring of a diameter of about 3-5 deg. It lasted about
>5 min and appeared to remain fixed related to stars in the background.
>Other people observed the same phenomenon from nearby cities (including
>Bauru, 140 km SW) at roughly the same time and in the same part of the
>sky. We have no explanation so far. Could it had been generated by a
>Titan 4 rocket (or its payload) launched on that day?. Or by an Ariane
>42 (or payload INSAT 2E) launched a few days earlier?. Were phenomena
>like this one observed before?.

>                                           Aldo Loup.