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Very fast moving satellite/object - 1046pm tonight near jupiter


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just saw a very fast moving object that may have been space junk / satellite, i only caught sight as it passed about 15 degrees west of arcturus, traveled diagonally down about 20 degrees west of jupiter - what was abnormal was 1) the speed much faster than seen a satellite before, only took around 10 seconds 2) it flared up really bright 3 times slightly erratically each time around mag 2.5 to mag -1, then faded to about mag 4 as went to horizon, time was about 10.46pm tonight and location near gatwick - anyone else see this?

Not sure what was, my guess is could be space junk? Couldnt find on sky safari - measurements above are rough estimates!


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Seems like a tumbler, the apparent speed would be from the low altitude because the thing is getting closer to Earth before it finally crashes. I saw a slow regular one last december.

The large change in brightness is caused by solar panels like in Iridium flares, or because the tumbler is typically a long piece of rocket: when it's seen from the side it reflects more sunlight.

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