View Full Version : Tracking Earth's Satellites....

Sep 23, 2003, 10:12 PM

This site shows all the satellites revolving around the Earth, as well as where they are generally located with respect to the Earth. They each have their own orbit, so relative position changes, but whatever. Actually, I believe that the position of the satellites is in real time, so they may actually be quite accurate.

And yes, they exclude spy satellites, I'm sure.

Doctor Q
Sep 23, 2003, 10:39 PM
I like to watch for upcoming Iridium Flares (http://www.nmm.ac.uk/site/request/setTemplate:singlecontent/contentTypeA/conWebDoc/contentId/383/navId/00500300f00f), sometimes extremely bright, that appear for a few seconds when the sun reflects off one of the dozens of Iridium mobile phone satellites. Once you specify your latitude and longitude, the Heavens-Above (http://www.heavens-above.com/) site is great for telling you exactly when they will occur, how far from your home, where in the sky to look, and how bright it will be at your location. You can also find software on the Internet to run the same calculations yourself.

Sep 26, 2003, 07:04 AM
amazing site

i bookmarked it:D

Mr. Anderson
Sep 26, 2003, 07:07 AM
Its been there for a while, but its a great site - they should make it a screen saver....:D


Doctor Q
Sep 26, 2003, 12:42 PM
You know the old story that if you stand on a street corner looking up, a crowd will gather around you and look up, and the effect will keep multiplying even if you slip out of the crowd?

Well, in a similar vein, I went out in front of my home a few minutes before an Iridium flare was due to be visible from my location. I stood there letting my eyes getting used to the dark sky (although a densly populated area full of street lights is one of the last places you want to be for skygazing) and watching for the flare. Several neighbors out walking or driving by asked me what I was doing there and they believed my odd-sounding story about predicatable reflections of the sun off communication satellites, so they stood with me and looked too. By the time of the flare, there were about half a dozen of us. Maybe next time I'll give it a little more lead time and see how big a crowd I can collect.

Sep 26, 2003, 12:46 PM
There's an amazing program available called MacDopplerProX - find it at:


It tracks ANY satellite in true 3D, and can pinpoint anything going overhead, extrapolating data for future events easily.

Give it a look-see...