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North Yorkshire - Iridium Flares


Scarborough, UK
2014 Oct 25
Saturday, Day 298

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For schools, clubs and societies - space exploration and history






Iridium Flares
Pick the Closest:















Astronomy in Yorkshire:


Very Much an "Identified Flying Object"

Occasionally something in the sky will catch your eye, like a slowly moving light that gets very bright and then fades away, all in the space of about five seconds. The chances are that you have spotted one of the sixty or so "Iridium" satellites in orbit.

iridium panelIridiums are fitted with a large, flat and highly polished panel behind behind each of their three aerials. They can occasionally produce glints that nearly rival the Full Moon in brightness.

Because of the very controlled way in which way the satellites orient themselves in space, Iridium 'flares' are highly predictable. Those in the know can wait for them and can be looking in the right direction when they occur.

The table tells you which direction to look and the maximum brightness (Visual Magnitude) to expect. The more negative the figure, the brighter it will be. For comparison, the brightest stars in the Sky are magnitude -1, Venus at its most brilliant is -4 and a Full Moon is -11.

Sometimes the flare will be a little brighter or dimmer than expected because of minor deviations in the satellite's orientation.


All Locations

One thing you can do is see how different the same flare appears from a location a few miles away. It might be dimmer, brighter, and it might happen a few seconds earlier or later as the satellite travels round its orbit. It takes nearly 15 seconds for a flare event to travel across Yorkshire.

Times are local UK so will show Summer Time when it is in force.

Date Location Iridium
Number
Time
BST
Visual
Mag
Azimuth Elevation Reflector
October 24, FriScarborough 57 07:22:03
-1
66° (ENE)
27°
Middle aerial
Malton 49 19:00:44
-3
19° (NNE)
54°
LH aerial
Scarborough 49 19:00:46
-1
17° (NNE)
55°
LH aerial
Dalby Forest 49 19:00:47
-2
19° (NNE)
54°
LH aerial
Whitby 49 19:00:50
-2
18° (NNE)
55°
LH aerial
October 25, SatScarborough 25 06:19:19
-1
168° (SSE)
35°
LH aerial
Bridlington 25 06:19:22
-2
168° (SSE)
36°
LH aerial
Whitby 59 07:06:29
-5
62° (ENE)
23°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 59 07:06:31
-1
62° (ENE)
22°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 59 07:06:33
-3
62° (ENE)
22°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 59 07:06:34
-6
62° (ENE)
23°
Middle aerial
Malton 59 07:06:35
-2
62° (ENE)
22°
Middle aerial
York 59 07:06:37
-1
62° (ENE)
22°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 59 07:06:39
-7
63° (ENE)
23°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 22 18:54:36
-3
20° (NNE)
55°
LH aerial
York 22 18:54:35
-1
26° (NNE)
53°
LH aerial
Malton 22 18:54:37
-2
24° (NNE)
54°
LH aerial
Scarborough 22 18:54:40
-7
22° (NNE)
54°
LH aerial
Dalby Forest 22 18:54:40
-3
23° (NNE)
54°
LH aerial
Whitby 22 18:54:43
-3
23° (NNE)
54°
LH aerial
October 26, SunSutton Bank 20 05:22:21
-2
175° (S)
36°
LH aerial
York 20 05:22:26
-1
175° (S)
36°
LH aerial
Whitby 29 05:48:36
-2
58° (ENE)
19°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 29 05:48:39
-1
58° (ENE)
19°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 29 05:48:41
-2
58° (ENE)
19°
Middle aerial
Malton 29 05:48:41
-1
58° (ENE)
19°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 29 05:48:46
-2
59° (ENE)
19°
Middle aerial
Whitby 55 05:51:00
-4
58° (ENE)
20°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 55 05:51:00
-1
58° (ENE)
19°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 55 05:51:03
-3
59° (ENE)
20°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 55 05:51:04
-4
59° (ENE)
20°
Middle aerial
Malton 55 05:51:05
-2
59° (ENE)
19°
Middle aerial
York 55 05:51:06
-1
58° (ENE)
19°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 55 05:51:09
-5
59° (ENE)
20°
Middle aerial
Whitby 95 06:00:19
-1
61° (ENE)
22°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 95 06:00:21
-5
60° (ENE)
21°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 95 06:00:22
-2
61° (ENE)
22°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 95 06:00:24
-1
61° (ENE)
22°
Middle aerial
Malton 95 06:00:24
-3
61° (ENE)
22°
Middle aerial
York 95 06:00:27
-7
61° (ENE)
21°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 95 06:00:28
-1
61° (ENE)
23°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 25 17:48:26
-1
19° (NNE)
58°
LH aerial
York 25 17:48:25
-3
25° (NNE)
56°
LH aerial
Malton 25 17:48:27
-5
23° (NNE)
57°
LH aerial
Scarborough 25 17:48:30
-2
21° (NNE)
57°
LH aerial
Dalby Forest 25 17:48:30
-4
22° (NNE)
57°
LH aerial
Sutton Bank 25 17:48:30
-2
26° (NNE)
56°
LH aerial
Whitby 25 17:48:34
-3
22° (NNE)
57°
LH aerial
October 27, MonWhitby 3 05:16:12
-3
176° (S)
36°
LH aerial
Scarborough 3 05:16:16
-2
176° (S)
36°
LH aerial
Dalby Forest 3 05:16:16
-4
175° (S)
36°
LH aerial
Bridlington 3 05:16:19
-1
178° (S)
36°
LH aerial
Malton 3 05:16:19
-8
175° (S)
36°
LH aerial
Sutton Bank 3 05:16:18
-2
173° (S)
36°
LH aerial
York 3 05:16:23
-2
173° (S)
36°
LH aerial
Whitby 31 05:44:50
-1
57° (ENE)
20°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 31 05:44:51
-4
57° (ENE)
19°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 31 05:44:53
-2
57° (ENE)
19°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 31 05:44:55
-1
57° (ENE)
20°
Middle aerial
Malton 31 05:44:55
-3
57° (ENE)
19°
Middle aerial
York 31 05:44:57
-5
57° (ENE)
19°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 31 05:45:00
-1
58° (ENE)
20°
Middle aerial
Whitby 32 06:08:03
-3
125° (SE)
11°
LH aerial
Scarborough 32 06:08:06
-3
125° (SE)
11°
LH aerial
Dalby Forest 32 06:08:07
-2
125° (SE)
11°
LH aerial
Bridlington 32 06:08:08
-4
125° (SE)
11°
LH aerial
Malton 32 06:08:11
-1
125° (SE)
11°
LH aerial
Sutton Bank 32 06:08:11
-1
124° (SE)
10°
LH aerial
Bridlington 47 17:42:17
-1
20° (NNE)
60°
LH aerial
York 47 17:42:16
-3
26° (NNE)
58°
LH aerial
Malton 47 17:42:18
-6
25° (NNE)
59°
LH aerial
Scarborough 47 17:42:21
-2
22° (NNE)
59°
LH aerial
Dalby Forest 47 17:42:21
-4
24° (NNE)
59°
LH aerial
Sutton Bank 47 17:42:21
-2
27° (NNE)
57°
LH aerial
Whitby 47 17:42:24
-3
24° (NNE)
59°
LH aerial
Sutton Bank 59 19:50:09
-1
9° (N)
11°
LH aerial
York 59 19:50:10
-2
8° (N)
10°
LH aerial
October 28, TueWhitby 76 05:10:09
-3
176° (S)
36°
LH aerial
Scarborough 76 05:10:13
-7
177° (S)
36°
LH aerial
Dalby Forest 76 05:10:13
-2
176° (S)
36°
LH aerial
Bridlington 76 05:10:16
-3
178° (S)
36°
LH aerial
Malton 76 05:10:16
-2
175° (S)
36°
LH aerial
Whitby 30 05:19:50
-3
50° (NE)
14°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 30 05:19:50
-1
50° (NE)
14°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 30 05:19:53
-2
50° (NE)
14°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 30 05:19:55
-3
51° (NE)
14°
Middle aerial
Malton 30 05:19:55
-2
50° (NE)
14°
Middle aerial
York 30 05:19:56
-1
50° (NE)
14°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 30 05:20:01
-2
51° (NE)
15°
Middle aerial
Whitby 32 05:29:17
-1
53° (NE)
17°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 32 05:29:17
-3
53° (NE)
16°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 32 05:29:20
-2
53° (NE)
17°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 32 05:29:21
-1
54° (NE)
17°
Middle aerial
Malton 32 05:29:21
-2
53° (NE)
16°
Middle aerial
York 32 05:29:22
-4
53° (NE)
16°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 32 05:29:27
-1
54° (NE)
17°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 91 05:38:38
-2
55° (NE)
18°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 91 05:38:41
-1
56° (NE)
18°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 91 05:38:43
-1
56° (NE)
19°
Middle aerial
Malton 91 05:38:42
-1
55° (NE)
18°
Middle aerial
York 91 05:38:44
-2
55° (NE)
18°
Middle aerial
Whitby 59 06:11:01
-4
128° (SE)
13°
LH aerial
Scarborough 59 06:11:03
-3
128° (SE)
13°
LH aerial
Bridlington 59 06:11:05
-3
128° (SE)
14°
LH aerial
Dalby Forest 59 06:11:05
-6
128° (SE)
13°
LH aerial
Malton 59 06:11:08
-4
128° (SE)
13°
LH aerial
Sutton Bank 59 06:11:12
-2
127° (SE)
12°
LH aerial
York 59 06:11:16
-2
127° (SE)
12°
LH aerial
Bridlington 11 17:36:09
-2
24° (NNE)
60°
LH aerial
York 11 17:36:10
-1
30° (NNE)
58°
LH aerial
Malton 11 17:36:11
-2
28° (NNE)
59°
LH aerial
Scarborough 11 17:36:13
-6
26° (NNE)
60°
LH aerial
Dalby Forest 11 17:36:14
-3
28° (NNE)
59°
LH aerial
Whitby 11 17:36:17
-4
27° (NNE)
59°
LH aerial
York 95 19:43:29
-5
9° (N)
13°
LH aerial
Malton 95 19:43:34
-2
9° (N)
13°
LH aerial
Sutton Bank 95 19:43:33
-4
10° (N)
13°
LH aerial
Dalby Forest 95 19:43:39
-2
9° (N)
13°
LH aerial
Whitby 95 19:43:44
-2
9° (N)
13°
LH aerial
Scarborough 95 19:43:49
-1
8° (N)
12°
LH aerial
October 29, WedWhitby 32 04:54:44
-5
43° (NE)
10°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 32 04:54:47
-3
44° (NE)
10°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 32 04:54:49
-4
44° (NE)
10°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 32 04:54:54
-3
44° (NE)
10°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 91 05:04:08
-1
45° (NE)
11°
Middle aerial
Whitby 91 05:04:09
-2
46° (NE)
12°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 91 05:04:12
-2
46° (NE)
12°
Middle aerial
Malton 91 05:04:13
-1
46° (NE)
11°
Middle aerial
York 91 05:04:13
-1
46° (NE)
11°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 91 05:04:14
-2
46° (NE)
12°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 91 05:04:19
-2
47° (NE)
12°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 57 05:13:41
-2
49° (NE)
13°
Middle aerial
Whitby 57 05:13:42
-1
49° (NE)
14°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 57 05:13:45
-1
49° (NE)
14°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 57 05:13:47
-1
50° (NE)
14°
Middle aerial
Malton 57 05:13:47
-2
49° (NE)
14°
Middle aerial
York 57 05:13:47
-3
49° (NE)
13°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 57 05:13:52
-1
50° (NE)
14°
Middle aerial
York 58 05:23:11
-1
52° (NE)
15°
Middle aerial
York 30 19:36:44
-1
10° (N)
18°
LH aerial
Sutton Bank 30 19:36:49
-2
11° (N)
18°
LH aerial
October 30, ThuSutton Bank 11 05:07:15
-3
183° (S)
36°
LH aerial
York 11 05:07:21
-2
183° (S)
36°
LH aerial

The data for these predictions are provided by Simone Corbellini, a mathematician and satellite observer who lives in Italy. His own website covers satellite observing and flares in more depth. You can get there from the left hand menu.

Copyright © Robert Christy, all rights reserved
Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited