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squeege3000

Satellites galore

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hello. i'm new to this site. Mark is my name, and I enjoy astronomy in Western NC.  I've taken some images of Orion nebula with a 102mm achromat, but noticed strange objects. I made a short video and would like some input on what in the heck all these objects are. These are 30 second images made into a video....

satellites galore.mp4

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They are moving - each streak is how far they travelled in 30 seconds. At least 20 in a 30 minute period? thats alot of satellites. maybe disentegrated satellite pieces?

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That part of Orion runs right a long the Geostationary belt as Steve points out.
Here they are in Stellarium.
As you can see these sats run right through M42 and should move right to left.

geosats.thumb.jpg.7f61438c3b91da65a4fb6ba1c105d356.jpg

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That’s right, they are geo-stationary so are fixed from our perspective but move against the star background as the earth rotates.

They all appear to be around Mag 18, and 39000km away which is the orbit that keeps them orbiting at the same rate that the Earth rotates.

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thank you for an understandable explanation!  Now I truly appreciate the mammoth task NASA has to make sure their astronauts are safe from collisions. Even though space station much much closer to Earth it's still probably a logistics nightmare keeping track of them all. BTW, my mount keeps drifting one way, then the other. is this Periodic error, unbalanced load, or power issue? Meade lxd75 mount.

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47 minutes ago, squeege3000 said:

thank you for an understandable explanation!  Now I truly appreciate the mammoth task NASA has to make sure their astronauts are safe from collisions. Even though space station much much closer to Earth it's still probably a logistics nightmare keeping track of them all. BTW, my mount keeps drifting one way, then the other. is this Periodic error, unbalanced load, or power issue? Meade lxd75 mount.

The geostationary sats are, as you say, a long way above the near earth satellites. If you look at the attached images from GoSatWatch you will see that there is a ring of Geostationary satellites above the equator out at 39k km, then a ball of near earth ones which is where NASA have to watch out for the ISS, Hubble etc. These are at anything from a couple of hundred km up I guess. ISS is at around 400km currently.

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