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 Post subject: Humanity Star
PostPosted: Wed Jan 24, 2018 12:47 pm 
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Rocket Lab unveils ‘Humanity Star’ – a shiny satellite you can see in space

https://www.geekwire.com/2018/rocket-la ... see-space/

Quote:
Rocket Lab says Humanity Star, a geodesic sphere made of carbon fiber with 65 reflective panels, could well rank as the brightest satellite in the night sky.


This site, when it's working, supposedly enables people to observe this manmade object.

http://www.thehumanitystar.com/

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 Post subject: Re: Humanity Star
PostPosted: Thu Jan 25, 2018 7:41 am 
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Direct link to tracker:

http://www.thehumanitystar.com/#tracker

It's working now

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 Post subject: Re: Humanity Star
PostPosted: Thu Jan 25, 2018 11:39 am 
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Although it might be mildly interesting to see how this small disco ball looks compared to the many satellites currently in orbit, including the already-bright ISS and the predictable and sometimes very bright specular reflections from Iridium flares (and some other, more random satellite flares), this "Humanity Star" seems to be rather pretentious in the concept that somehow, a significant percentage of the population will look at it, thus bring humanity together.

In any case, the linked finder at the promoter's web site isn't really much of a planning aid. Just go to the tried-and-true satellite tracker, Heavens-Above, where it's now listed. As of this writing, there are no visible passes for my NJ location through February 4, 2018. If you click the "all" button, there are a number of daylight and unlit night passes in the next week and a half.

The altitude parameters at H-A also show why it won't be in orbit too long. It now has a perigee of 292 km (181 miles) and an apogee of 521 km (324 miles). The ISS orbit is currently 402 x 407 km (250 x 253 miles), and it needs to be re-boosted on a regular basis to remain in orbit.

I was less successful at Cal-Sky, not finding anything by searching for Humanity, but C-S can often be inscrutable. Looking at objects launched in 2018, I did find several with orbits around 290 x 525 km, but they were described only as Object A, Object B and Object Debris, so I didn't pursue them further.

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 Post subject: Re: Humanity Star
PostPosted: Thu Jan 25, 2018 2:58 pm 
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JoeStieber wrote:
Just go to the tried-and-true satellite tracker, Heavens-Above, where it's now listed.


Oh yes, thank you Joe!

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 Post subject: Re: Humanity Star
PostPosted: Fri Jan 26, 2018 11:46 am 
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'Space graffiti': astronomers angry over launch of fake star into sky

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/ ... r-into-sky

Quote:
Giant disco ball dubbed ‘Humanity Star’, launched by startup Rocket Lab, will interfere with scientific study of the universe, experts say


I believe the kerfuffle behind Humanity's Star is a tempest in a teapot. The object's going to be in space for nine months. It'll be visible for a few minutes at a time, at dawn/dusk, and no more distracting than the ISS or Iridium flares.

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 Post subject: Re: Humanity Star
PostPosted: Fri Jan 26, 2018 1:58 pm 
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Why Astronomers Complaining About Humanity's Star Will Complain About Anything

https://www.dailygrail.com/2018/01/why- ... -anything/

Written by yours truly.

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 Post subject: Re: Humanity Star
PostPosted: Fri Jan 26, 2018 6:36 pm 
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Someone on Twitter, @UFOvet, told me about a series of missions between 1999 and 2003 called STARSHINE.

I included it as an update in my article:

https://www.dailygrail.com/2018/01/why- ... -anything/

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 Post subject: Re: Humanity Star
PostPosted: Fri Jan 26, 2018 8:40 pm 
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I wonder if the complaining scientifists, perhaps subconsciously, are using this as opportunity to tell us how important scientific research is to humanity. In a way, they might be blowing their own horn. They should not be the only judges here. Some people, like nature lovers of the nighttime sky, might not like the light caused by orbiting scientific space labs and instruments.

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 Post subject: Re: Humanity Star
PostPosted: Sat Jan 27, 2018 9:46 am 
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doctorcos wrote:
They should not be the only judges here. Some people, like nature lovers of the nighttime sky, might not like the light caused by orbiting scientific space labs and instruments.


Satellite flares are minor and hard to see for people who aren't constantly gazing skyward. Even in those moments, there is a sense of awe rather than "aw".

But in your defense, and a weak defense of Scharf and Brown, is this a slippery slope?

On the gripping hand, maybe Scharf and Brown are pooh-pooh'ing Humanity Star to raise its signal in the news. Nobody likes good news, but they're all over bad news and complaints like flies on poop.

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 Post subject: Re: Humanity Star
PostPosted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 3:31 pm 
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Quote:
Humanity Star: Bright Idea or Dark Sky Nemesis?
By: Bob King | January 31, 2018

http://www.skyandtelescope.com/observing/humanity-star/

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 Post subject: Re: Humanity Star
PostPosted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 8:46 pm 
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An excellent article. If you're a worry wart, though, you might not want to read it; it brings up a credible and disturbing "slippery slope" possibility.

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