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Subject: Iridium Flares (2x) rss

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Jerry Dziuba
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I'm pretty much an Iridium Flare rookie being that I've begun spotting some for the first time this year. Last night I spotted a double flare which was two flares in almost the exact same spot that occurred within 20 seconds of each other.

If there are any flare veterans out there I'm wondering just how rare something like that is? Seems to me that it would be a fairly rare occurrence, but I'm not basing that on anything other than my own goofy conjecture.

Anyone?
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If Actions Speak Louder Than Words, Then Actions x2 Speak Louder Than Actions
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Wait.
























What?
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Rob
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joebelanger wrote:
What?


*ahem*

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iridium_satellites#Satellites

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Rob
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Nick Danger wrote:
Anyone?


I don't observe them myself, but I've found Sky and Telescope a good resource for articles and tracking software.
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Rob
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Jerry, to answer your original question, my guess is that you observed an Iridium satellite and a non-Iridium satellite very close in your line-of-sight. The Iridium satellites are supposed to be equidistant from each other, so I would not expect to see two so close together.
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Osmotic Trickster
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[As mentioned above...]

Heavens-Above

The satellite watchers' BGG.
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Jerry Dziuba
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Sinister Dexter wrote:
Jerry, to answer your original question, my guess is that you observed an Iridium satellite and a non-Iridium satellite very close in your line-of-sight. The Iridium satellites are supposed to be equidistant from each other, so I would not expect to see two so close together.


Yeah, that's what I thought but it was listed as two different Iridium satellites. I forget which numbers they were now, but it was definitely two Iridiums. Or at least that was the info I was working from.

I use the Iridium Flares app which pulls it's data from Heavens-above. It's a great little app for the purpose, with GPS function for views at your current location and also ability to set reminders.

Back to Rob's point... I don't get it either unless maybe it's a new one taking the place of a failed one? Again, that's coming from absolutely no source other than my totally guessing brain.
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andrew
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i saw my first one about a fortnight ago. and another last week. it's fun getting a sore neck while you wait

i view on the WIR (when i remember) basis.
 
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J
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Nick Danger wrote:
Back to Rob's point... I don't get it either unless maybe it's a new one taking the place of a failed one?

You've got it. The double flares come from spare/replacement Iridium satellites.
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Walt
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You may find these articles on the Iridium satellite "Constellation" and Iridium flares clarifies things somewhat. In short 66 satellites are operational (excluding spares, I think), all in approximately 100 minute orbits, with about 1/2 minute flare periods. So, given they have different orbits to provide 24/7 worldwide coverage, double flares are pretty usual.
 
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