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Orion with an Iridium flare


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Iridium flares can go as bright as -8. Venus is -4. Magnitude is a roughly logarithmic scale, so 3 magnitudes is 10 times as bright, meaning a -8 mag is ~13 times as bright as Venus.

Yeah, they can be pretty spectacular.

Sometimes, you're not located right in the path, so they can be dimmer, too. I generally don't bother unless they're brighter than -4 or so. The one in the picture was a -6, if I remember right.

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