Re: ASTRO: recc.: Meade ETX-60AT Astro Telescope?

Date: Wed Jan 10 2001 - 16:51:33 MST

Brent Allsop writes:
> Another thing I'd like to see is the International Space
> Station (ISS). I caught it the other night with a pair of binoculars
> but still couldn't resolve anything other than a shaky (had troubles
> holding the binoculars still) spot.

I went out and looked at the ISS the other night, just naked eye -
it was quite bright at mag 0. I use to
check when this and other satellites will be visible from my location.
Iridium flares are fun, too, sometimes reaching a dazzling magnitude -9
for a few seconds when the geometry is just right.

I've seen satellites occasionally while using my 3.5" Questar, always
by accident. They move across the field of view in a second or two.
This is of course far faster than the sidereal drive in the telescope.

With modern computerized motor-driven scopes there are programs which will
track satellites. See
for some links to amazing pictures of Mir and space shuttles, as well
as links to suppliers of the software and hardware. I don't know how
cheaply you could put a system like this together, though.


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