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BAA Images Nick James

Observation by Nick James: JWST and upper stage

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Nick James


Nick James


2021 Dec 31 - 22:00


2022 Jan 01 - 08:33



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Field centre

RA: 06h08m
Dec: +00°00'
Position angle: +1°07'

Field size

0°27' × 0°16'

  • ASI6200MM + Celestron HD11



Chelmsford, UK

Target name



JWST and upper stage

About this image

These are images of the JWST spacecraft (2021-130A) and the Ariane upper stage (2021-130B) taken last night. They are currently around 2 deg apart on the sky. JWST is much brighter tonight and the huge sunshield was being deployed. The magnitude was 14.3 at a range of 687,000 km. I think that the sunshield was half out when this image was taken but this implies a magnitude of around 16 or so at L2.

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Paul Leyland
Paul Leyland, 2022 Jan 05 - 17:36 UTC

Have you submitted astrometry of the Ariane? How bright was it?

We would like as good an orbit as possible so it has a good chance of being recovered in 2047 on its next close approach.

Most anyone with a camera can reach 16 mag if they could be bothered. I've seen images showing 19th-magnitude Cepheids in M31 which were taken with a 80mm refractor.

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