new icn messageflickr-free-ic3d pan white
Satellite Flash (Iridium) [5_033852-4br] | by Steven Christenson
Back to photostream

Satellite Flash (Iridium) [5_033852-4br]

Iridium satellites slowly rotate 3 very brightly polished antenna which - when they reflect sunlight get very bright and then grow dim again. Since the Iridium satellites move more slowly than meteors Iridium "flares" often appear in photos and are mistaken for meteors. In this case the trajectory would have been wrong for a Perseid meteor - the radiant point is below and to the right of the "a" in Cassiopea.


This is actually 3 separate shots stacked together - and you can see the trail in and the trail out of the flare with a tiny gap between each during the nearly 2 seconds when the camera was not recording.


© Copyright 2011, Steven Christenson

Bay Area Night Photography


All rights reserved. Curious what "all rights reserved means?" it means that without written permission you may not: copy, transmit, modify, use, print or display this image in any context other than as it appears in Flickr.

1 fave
Uploaded on August 13, 2011