Very bright Starlink train

Forums General Discussion Very bright Starlink train

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    Nick James

    At 21:33 BST tonight John Mason alerted me to the very bright Starlink-5 train passing over the UK. Many of the satellites were first magnitude! It was at the same time a very impressive but very scary sight to see multiple objects as bright at Procyon crossing the sky. The satellites were much brighter than predicted on Heavens Above. My all sky video meteor camera picked them up and this is a stack of just over 5 minutes of video.

    David Swan

    How annoying I missed the train – the skies are great this evening, and I was just waiting for it to get a little darker before going out. C/2019 Y1 is looking very nice this evening.

    Grant Privett

    I’m sure we will get many such opportunities over the next decade.

    Anyone any idea what the system lifetime is? Though if they make money they will of course lob up replacements for those descending.

    Stewart Moore

    Just in from observing.  I agree they were much brighter than predicted by Heavens Above.  They took me by surprise as I hadn’t expected them.  They just kept on coming.  Both a fascinating and a scary view if this is the future. A brilliant night though, reasonable transparency and good seeing. And no dew.

    Neil Morrison

    Yes just in from  trying  and hope  succeeding in  imaging Comet Altas  Rising  from the  shoulder of  Orion   a chain of  the new  vermin of  the  skies.   Most exceeded  magnitude  one  when  directly over head.   Counted 15 in all. 

    The sky  at Gatwick never  get  dark  but Atlas  resolved itself in  the Sony  Camera  frames  at 21.27. So the Vermin    just added an extra dimension to the evenings viewing.  Keep safe  every one.

    Nick James

    I’ve put a timelapse of that all-sky video here. This is made from 1s max stacks of the video frames animated at x5 real time.

    Alan Snook

    Setting up in the garden at 9.30pm yesterday, glancing up I was taken aback to see half a dozen bright lights overhead, sweeping west to east in follow-my-leader order at 20 degree separation. And they kept coming. I lost count. Their track was from Procyon, between Leo & Leo Minor, and away through Bootes. Ten minutes later they were still coming. Every light was brighter than any of the seven stars of the Plough. To think once we made a big thing of seeing the old Echo balloon satellite. Dear o dear, human’s ability to screw things up in innovative new ways knows no limit. It’s just as well we get old and die.

    Alex Pratt
    My Leeds_SE video meteor camera picked up some of these peskies, one clip had 5 of them traipsing across the sky.
    I see that ‘improvements to mitigate the impact on astronomers’ weren’t evident last night. Hopefully the satellites will be fainter when they attain their final orbits.
    The Heavens Above website FAQ says:
    “The brightness of a spacecraft is influenced by several factors…our magnitude estimates should only be treated as a rough guide, and the actual brightness you see could be considerably more or less than this”
    ‘Enjoy’ the show!
    David Swan

    Still has satellite leaving Algieba in Leo for Arcturus in Bootes.

    (50MB file)!Agvxu8wNOxpAgRgHDKnjqn6jR6aj?e=JufwyL

    Peter Meadows

    Saw multiple Starlink satellites this evening from 20:00 to 20:30 UT including 7 at the same time, all at about mag 1.

    Just read the next batch are due to be launched tomorrow, Wednesday, April 22 at 3:37 p.m. EDT [1937 GMT] – see

    Paul G. Abel

    Yes I saw them on Sunday. At their highest they were brighter than Regulus and around the same magnitude as Pollux, so that gives a magnitude of about +1.1.  Very bright!

    William Stewart

    Marco Langbroek has highlighted that the next Starlink Launch is tonight at 19:30 GMT (20:30 BST) –

    Plugging his draft elsets into Heavensat, it looks like the upper stage / satellite dispenser may be visible just below Venus at 19:50:50, rising to an altitude of 65 degrees in the south at 19:51:59 (these times are GMT and for Cheshire but should be close enough for most of the UK). The dispenser is supposed to start pushing them out around 10 minute after launch (ie out over the North Atlantic) but unclear what the separation may be by the time they rise above our horizon. Sky won’t be particularly dark so binoculars may help if the contrast is low.

    Currently a little cloudy here but hopefully someone sees something.

    Good Luck, William

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