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January 22nd Orion ANY ideas??


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Last night around 11.15pm i decided to take a look at M42 through my 10x50 bins on a monopod..

Within seconds there was a bright orange flash just above the top of the sword. WOW...was it an iridium flare?

It only lasted a moment....then about 15 secs it flashed again...it had moved east very slightly...this continued for about 15 minutes. Every 25-30 secs was this bright flash. Over the 15 minutes it only moved about the same distance as the 3 stars of Orions belt.

I went to get my partner but couldn't find it again. 

The bright flash was thru the bins but i doubt it could be seen naked eye.

 

Has anyone any idea what it could be?

 

Even though we had a gibbous moon, the seeing was superb indeed!

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If it continued for around 15 mins it was moving too slowly for an irridium flare. As you say it was orange, I'd suspect it may have been a weather balloon reflecting sunlight. 

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It was late in the night, over 7hrs after sunset. For a balloon to reflect sunlight it would need to be still in sunlight? 

Wouldn't the late night and Southern aspect have the earth shadow preventing reflection?

 

But thanks for the reply.. 

Could it be space debris but far out tumbling in space? 

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17 minutes ago, Pybo said:

It was late in the night, over 7hrs after sunset. For a balloon to reflect sunlight it would need to be still in sunlight? 

Wouldn't the late night and Southern aspect have the earth shadow preventing reflection?

 

But thanks for the reply.. 

Could it be space debris but far out tumbling in space? 

Glancing reflection from moonlight? A few months ago I saw (naked eye) a very slow bright satellite in the West that was just too late to be reflecting sunlight. Confirmed its position using one of the satellite tracking websites. My only thought was that it was catching the sunlight reflected off the moon, which was suitably positioned.

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14 minutes ago, Pixies said:

Glancing reflection from moonlight? A few months ago I saw (naked eye) a very slow bright satellite in the West that was just too late to be reflecting sunlight. Confirmed its position using one of the satellite tracking websites. My only thought was that it was catching the sunlight reflected off the moon, which was suitably positioned.

Thats an interesting possibility 🤔 

Hmmm but can a satellite be moving that slowly? Over the 15 mins i observed it it only moved east about the distance of Orions belt.

 

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33 minutes ago, Pybo said:

Thats an interesting possibility 🤔 

Hmmm but can a satellite be moving that slowly? Over the 15 mins i observed it it only moved east about the distance of Orions belt.

 

No. But perhaps that weather balloon.

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39 minutes ago, Pixies said:

No. But perhaps that weather balloon.

That would explain the very slow movement... 

Cheers fellas... 😃

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A weather balloon can be very high, and although I wondered about the angle relative to the Sun, I've seen the typical intermittant orange reflection many times before. In a telescope you'd almost certainly detect its form as they tend to look like long deflated  balloons. When they cross the Moon they can give you quite a thrill momentarily. Whether the Moon itself would reflect off the silver balloon I'm not sure, but as it was orange in colour I'd imagine it was catching sunlight as it refracted through the earths atmosphere. Of course I could be completely wrong! 🛸

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4 hours ago, mikeDnight said:

A weather balloon can be very high, and although I wondered about the angle relative to the Sun, I've seen the typical intermittant orange reflection many times before. In a telescope you'd almost certainly detect its form as they tend to look like long deflated  balloons. When they cross the Moon they can give you quite a thrill momentarily. Whether the Moon itself would reflect off the silver balloon I'm not sure, but as it was orange in colour I'd imagine it was catching sunlight as it refracted through the earths atmosphere. Of course I could be completely wrong! 🛸

It certainly was unusual...the bright orange flash was very quick...blink and you would miss it.. it did fade as it moved very slowly eastwards.  Like i say, it only moved a small distance over 15 mins...then i couldn't find it again.

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