First of all I like to raise a glass to Mike for a great lecture today on astrophotography (sorry for turning up late, I got slightly confused and went to the deep sky lecture a week early!).
Anyway, the lecture prompted me to ask about this. In one of my first CCD sessions I noticed “something” crossing the frame. Guessing it’s a satellite of some sort, but the south – north direction made it a little more interesting. Some military maybe?
I’ve searched however and have yet to come up with a conclusive answer…
Around 2:13 in the video.
The resulting image wasn’t too bad though…
Glad you enjoyed it this evening, Nick.
That’s a great image of the Moon.
As regards the “mystery object” it looks like a satellite or perhaps a piece of space debris. There are quite a few south-north satellites and not all are military / spy satellite in origin. Many environmental satellites have this orbital path so that they can cover the whole planetary surface over a period of time.
There will be quite a few rocket bodies as well… and particularly remnants of old Soviet spy satellites.
SkySafari has satellites included in the database now, so that’s a good place to look. Orbitrack is another app that is quite useful for satellite data.
Looking at it again in close-up, the object does appear to be changing shape (though that could be atmospherics)… leading me to suspect that it’s an object that’s tumbling and therefore probably space debris, like a spent rocket booster or rocket body.
Yeah I think you could be right. At higher resolution it definitely appears to be changing shape. Interesting stuff! Thanks mike!
That’s a fascinating capture of a mysterious transit, Nick! And a lovely pan of the moon in its own right. But the final image is fabulous, nice work. Also, great detective work from both of you!
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