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North Yorkshire - Iridium Flares


Scarborough, UK
2014 Aug 27
Wednesday, Day 239

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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
August 26, TueDalby Forest 81 20:17:39
-1
128° (SE)
77°
RH aerial
Sutton Bank 81 20:17:40
-4
122° (ESE)
75°
RH aerial
Malton 81 20:17:42
-1
127° (SE)
77°
RH aerial
Bridlington 68 23:38:13
-1
255° (WSW)
23°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 68 23:38:18
-1
255° (WSW)
24°
Middle aerial
Whitby 68 23:38:23
-1
255° (WSW)
25°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 21 23:47:14
-2
256° (WSW)
20°
Middle aerial
Malton 21 23:47:17
-3
256° (WSW)
21°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 21 23:47:19
-2
256° (WSW)
20°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 21 23:47:20
-3
256° (WSW)
21°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 21 23:47:21
-6
256° (WSW)
21°
Middle aerial
Whitby 21 23:47:25
-2
257° (WSW)
21°
Middle aerial
August 27, WedBridlington 4 03:29:19
-5
105° (ESE)
22°
Middle aerial
Malton 4 03:29:19
-2
104° (ESE)
21°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 4 03:29:20
-1
104° (ESE)
20°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 4 03:29:22
-2
104° (ESE)
21°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 4 03:29:23
-4
104° (ESE)
21°
Middle aerial
Whitby 4 03:29:27
-3
104° (ESE)
21°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 35 03:32:11
-3
105° (ESE)
22°
Middle aerial
Malton 35 03:32:11
-7
104° (ESE)
22°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 35 03:32:12
-3
104° (ESE)
21°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 35 03:32:14
-8
104° (ESE)
22°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 35 03:32:15
-4
105° (ESE)
22°
Middle aerial
Whitby 35 03:32:19
-7
104° (ESE)
22°
Middle aerial
Whitby 43 20:11:33
-3
128° (SE)
76°
RH aerial
Scarborough 43 20:11:36
-2
130° (SE)
77°
RH aerial
Dalby Forest 43 20:11:36
-4
126° (SE)
76°
RH aerial
Sutton Bank 43 20:11:37
-2
121° (ESE)
73°
RH aerial
Malton 43 20:11:39
-7
125° (SE)
75°
RH aerial
Bridlington 43 20:11:40
-1
134° (SE)
77°
RH aerial
York 43 20:11:42
-2
121° (ESE)
73°
RH aerial
York 70 23:41:14
-1
256° (WSW)
22°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 70 23:41:15
-4
257° (WSW)
20°
Middle aerial
Malton 70 23:41:18
-2
257° (WSW)
21°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 70 23:41:20
-3
257° (WSW)
21°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 70 23:41:21
-2
257° (WSW)
21°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 70 23:41:21
-1
256° (WSW)
22°
Middle aerial
Whitby 70 23:41:26
-2
257° (WSW)
22°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 62 23:50:17
-1
259° (W)
17°
Middle aerial
York 62 23:50:17
-2
258° (WSW)
18°
Middle aerial
Malton 62 23:50:21
-1
259° (W)
18°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 62 23:50:23
-1
259° (W)
17°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 62 23:50:24
-1
259° (W)
18°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 62 23:50:24
-2
259° (W)
18°
Middle aerial
Whitby 62 23:50:29
-1
259° (W)
18°
Middle aerial
August 28, ThuYork 6 03:25:55
-1
106° (ESE)
20°
Middle aerial
Malton 6 03:26:00
-2
106° (ESE)
21°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 6 03:26:01
-4
106° (ESE)
21°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 6 03:26:01
-1
105° (ESE)
20°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 6 03:26:04
-2
106° (ESE)
21°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 6 03:26:05
-3
106° (ESE)
21°
Middle aerial
Whitby 6 03:26:09
-2
105° (ESE)
21°
Middle aerial
York 7 03:35:13
-1
107° (ESE)
24°
Middle aerial
Malton 7 03:35:18
-1
107° (ESE)
24°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 7 03:35:19
-1
107° (ESE)
24°
Middle aerial
Whitby 40 20:05:32
-7
131° (SE)
75°
RH aerial
Scarborough 40 20:05:35
-4
133° (SE)
75°
RH aerial
Dalby Forest 40 20:05:35
-5
129° (SE)
74°
RH aerial
Sutton Bank 40 20:05:36
-1
124° (SE)
72°
RH aerial
Bridlington 40 20:05:39
-2
137° (SE)
76°
RH aerial
Malton 40 20:05:38
-3
129° (SE)
74°
RH aerial
York 40 20:05:41
-1
124° (SE)
73°
RH aerial
Bridlington 65 23:44:20
-6
260° (W)
17°
Middle aerial
York 65 23:44:19
-3
260° (W)
18°
Middle aerial
Malton 65 23:44:23
-4
260° (W)
18°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 65 23:44:25
-8
261° (W)
18°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 65 23:44:26
-5
260° (W)
18°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 65 23:44:26
-3
260° (W)
19°
Middle aerial
Whitby 65 23:44:31
-6
261° (W)
18°
Middle aerial
York 66 23:53:22
-1
261° (W)
15°
Middle aerial
Malton 66 23:53:26
-1
262° (W)
15°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 66 23:53:29
-1
262° (W)
15°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 66 23:53:29
-1
262° (W)
16°
Middle aerial
August 29, FriYork 37 03:28:57
-3
109° (ESE)
23°
Middle aerial
Malton 37 03:29:03
-2
109° (ESE)
24°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 37 03:29:03
-4
109° (ESE)
23°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 37 03:29:04
-1
110° (ESE)
25°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 37 03:29:07
-1
109° (ESE)
24°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 37 03:29:06
-2
109° (ESE)
24°
Middle aerial
Whitby 37 03:29:11
-2
109° (ESE)
24°
Middle aerial
Whitby 77 19:59:30
-3
135° (SE)
74°
RH aerial
Scarborough 77 19:59:34
-9
138° (SE)
75°
RH aerial
Dalby Forest 77 19:59:34
-2
134° (SE)
74°
RH aerial
Bridlington 77 19:59:37
-3
140° (SE)
75°
RH aerial
Malton 77 19:59:36
-2
132° (SE)
73°
RH aerial
Bridlington 68 23:38:21
-1
261° (W)
18°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 68 23:38:26
-1
261° (W)
19°
Middle aerial
Whitby 68 23:38:31
-1
261° (W)
19°
Middle aerial
York 21 23:47:24
-4
262° (W)
16°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 21 23:47:26
-4
263° (W)
15°
Middle aerial
Malton 21 23:47:28
-7
263° (W)
16°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 21 23:47:31
-5
263° (W)
16°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 21 23:47:31
-7
263° (W)
16°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 21 23:47:31
-4
263° (W)
17°
Middle aerial
Whitby 21 23:47:36
-5
263° (W)
16°
Middle aerial
York 72 23:56:28
-1
264° (W)
13°
Middle aerial
Malton 72 23:56:32
-1
265° (W)
13°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 72 23:56:36
-1
265° (W)
13°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 72 23:56:36
-1
264° (W)
14°
Middle aerial
August 30, SatYork 34 03:22:46
-5
111° (ESE)
22°
Middle aerial
Malton 34 03:22:51
-8
111° (ESE)
23°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 34 03:22:53
-2
111° (ESE)
24°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 34 03:22:52
-4
111° (ESE)
22°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 34 03:22:56
-4
111° (ESE)
24°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 34 03:22:55
-6
111° (ESE)
23°
Middle aerial
Whitby 34 03:23:00
-5
111° (ESE)
24°
Middle aerial
York 4 03:27:47
-1
113° (ESE)
25°
Middle aerial
Malton 4 03:27:52
-1
113° (ESE)
26°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 4 03:27:53
-2
112° (ESE)
25°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 4 03:27:56
-1
113° (ESE)
26°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 82 19:53:33
-1
135° (SE)
73°
RH aerial
Bridlington 70 23:41:27
-1
264° (W)
16°
Middle aerial
Malton 70 23:41:30
-1
264° (W)
17°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 70 23:41:32
-1
264° (W)
16°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 70 23:41:33
-1
264° (W)
17°
Middle aerial
Whitby 70 23:41:37
-1
264° (W)
17°
Middle aerial
York 62 23:50:32
-4
265° (W)
14°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 62 23:50:34
-4
266° (W)
13°
Middle aerial
Malton 62 23:50:36
-7
266° (W)
14°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 62 23:50:39
-5
266° (W)
14°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 62 23:50:39
-7
266° (W)
14°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 62 23:50:39
-4
266° (W)
14°
Middle aerial
Whitby 62 23:50:44
-5
266° (W)
14°
Middle aerial
York 63 23:59:32
-1
266° (W)
12°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 63 23:59:34
-1
267° (W)
11°
Middle aerial
Malton 63 23:59:36
-1
267° (W)
12°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 63 23:59:40
-1
267° (W)
11°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 63 23:59:40
-1
267° (W)
12°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 63 23:59:40
-1
267° (W)
12°
Middle aerial
Whitby 63 23:59:45
-1
267° (W)
12°
Middle aerial
August 31, SunYork 5 03:16:35
-2
112° (ESE)
21°
Middle aerial
Malton 5 03:16:40
-2
113° (ESE)
22°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 5 03:16:41
-1
112° (ESE)
21°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 5 03:16:42
-7
113° (ESE)
23°
Middle aerial
Dalby Forest 5 03:16:44
-3
112° (ESE)
22°
Middle aerial
Scarborough 5 03:16:45
-4
113° (ESE)
23°
Middle aerial
Whitby 5 03:16:49
-3
112° (ESE)
23°
Middle aerial
York 6 03:25:54
-1
114° (ESE)
26°
Middle aerial
Sutton Bank 6 03:26:00
-1
114° (ESE)
26°
Middle aerial
Bridlington 56 06:09:42
-1
27° (NNE)
37°
RH aerial
Scarborough 56 06:09:46
-2
27° (NNE)
36°
RH aerial
Malton 56 06:09:46
-6
28° (NNE)
36°
RH aerial
York 56 06:09:45
-2
28° (NNE)
35°
RH aerial
Dalby Forest 56 06:09:47
-4
28° (NNE)
36°
RH aerial
Whitby 56 06:09:50
-3
28° (NNE)
36°
RH aerial
Sutton Bank 56 06:09:50
-1
29° (NNE)
35°
RH aerial
York 66 23:53:41
-3
268° (W)
12°
Middle aerial
September 1, MonYork 8 03:10:19
-1
115° (ESE)
21°
Middle aerial
York 84 06:03:38
-4
27° (NNE)
34°
RH 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