Sighting - Series of Satellites In Line Friday 23 1050 UTC

From: Lee Emerson (leeemerson@optusnet.com.au)
Date: Mon Dec 26 2005 - 06:03:39 EST

  • Next message: Kevin Fetter: "Re: Sighting - Series of Satellites In Line Friday 23 1050 UTC"

    Dear List,
    
    I'm new to this list so please forgive any lack of specifics or correct
    jargon.  My observation point is close to Nambour Queensland  in Australia
    ( Coordinates: 26.6330 S, 152.9500 E)
    
    At 10:50 UTC on the 23rd December I saw three satellites travelling in line
    in a NNE direction from about 80 degrees alt.    They entered the earth's
    shadow fairly quickly.  They were equidistant from each other and spanned
    roughly the same distance as the belt of Orion.  I would put their magnitude
    as roughly equivalent to the brightest stars visible in the constellation of
    the Pleiades whose position was near to the satellites' path.  They appeared
    to be travelling directly in line (along the axis of their path) and at
    exactly the same speed suggesting that they were at the same height.
    
    Amazingly about two minutes later two more satellites travelling virtually
    on the same path and apparently at the same speed as each other passed
    overhead in the same direction . They weren't exactly in line though as the
    other three were.   Their magnitude appeared to be equal to some off the
    dimmer stars in the Pleiades.
    
    The only event I have heard about in the news that may have coincided with
    this event was the docking of a "transport" space vehicle with the ISS.  But
    this wouldn't explain the appearance of five satellites in succession.
    
    I have never seen anything like this before.  Any ideas?
    
    Cheers Lee Emerson
    
    
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