• We hope all of you have a great holiday season and an incredible New Year. Thanks so much for being part of the Space community!

Flashing Blue/ Red in Northwestern sky?

Status
Not open for further replies.
Y

yellowdogabbey

Guest
I am in Wood Dale Illinois, 1 1/2 hours away from chicago. Every night, whenever it gets dark, there is a very distinct blue and red flashing light. It almost looks like an airplane but is much to high to be one. I am very confused at what it is. Thank you to everyone in advance who answers my post!
 
M

MeteorWayne

Guest
What time is this.<br />My guess would be the star Arcturus, which can be found by following the curve of the Big Dipper's handle toward the lower left. <br /><br />The handle should be over the trees, and the brightest twinkling object below and to the left is Arcturus.<br /><br />Look at some of the other "flashing object" threads down below for more details on specifics.<br /><br />I posted a list of the top 10 brightest stars.<br /><br />Arcturus is high on the list.<br /><br />BTW Welcome to Space.com<br /><br />Meteor Wayne <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font color="#000080"><em><font color="#000000">But the Krell forgot one thing John. Monsters. Monsters from the Id.</font></em> </font></p><p><font color="#000080">I really, really, really, really miss the "first unread post" function</font><font color="#000080"> </font></p> </div>
 
S

star42

Guest
Live in East Tennessee I have also noticed flashing lights 25 degrees off the horizon N, S, E, & W. First noticed about 1 year ago. How is it that no one knows what they are.
 
M

MeteorWayne

Guest
They are stars. See the list of the 10 brightest stars I posted in the Red/Green flashing object thread, and learn where they are in the sky.<br /><br />If no one knows what they are, you aren't asking the right people.<br /><br />We know what they are, if you can accurately describe the time and direction, and learn a few of the brightest constellations. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font color="#000080"><em><font color="#000000">But the Krell forgot one thing John. Monsters. Monsters from the Id.</font></em> </font></p><p><font color="#000080">I really, really, really, really miss the "first unread post" function</font><font color="#000080"> </font></p> </div>
 
A

adrenalynn

Guest
Just to settle this down a bit, I'm planning on posting animated GIF and/or video of your top-ten list flashing, M-W... I think it sounds like a fun project. We're just having unseasonal rain here right now, so I'm waiting for a decent night. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p>.</p><p><font size="3">bipartisan</font>  (<span style="color:blue" class="pointer"><span class="pron"><font face="Lucida Sans Unicode" size="2">bī-pär'tĭ-zən, -sən</font></span></span>) [Adj.]  Maintaining the ability to blame republications when your stimulus plan proves to be a devastating failure.</p><p><strong><font color="#ff0000"><font color="#ff0000">IMPE</font><font color="#c0c0c0">ACH</font> <font color="#0000ff"><font color="#c0c0c0">O</font>BAMA</font>!</font></strong></p> </div>
 
S

star42

Guest
these lights are approx. ne,nw,se, sw. they are there between 8 and 11. That is the latest that I have looked for them.Last spring I looked at them with a small telescope and they are definitely not stars.the first one I saw I thought might be the space station, but then I slowly noticed the other 3. At first glance they do look like "twinkling" stars but you can actually see the different colors with the naked eye. I was in navigation in the Navy so I know a little about stars, satellites, aircraft lights etc. The more I try and find out what these lights are the more intrigued I get.
 
M

MeteorWayne

Guest
Actually stars can flash many colors when they are refracted close to the horizon.<br /><br />Despite your navigation skills, that is what they are. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font color="#000080"><em><font color="#000000">But the Krell forgot one thing John. Monsters. Monsters from the Id.</font></em> </font></p><p><font color="#000080">I really, really, really, really miss the "first unread post" function</font><font color="#000080"> </font></p> </div>
 
A

adrenalynn

Guest
M-W - we should contribute this to the Community DVD. I have video editing facilities, HD camera, encoding farm, rendering farm, etc. Want to write a script and I'll shoot some video as a starter? <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p>.</p><p><font size="3">bipartisan</font>  (<span style="color:blue" class="pointer"><span class="pron"><font face="Lucida Sans Unicode" size="2">bī-pär'tĭ-zən, -sən</font></span></span>) [Adj.]  Maintaining the ability to blame republications when your stimulus plan proves to be a devastating failure.</p><p><strong><font color="#ff0000"><font color="#ff0000">IMPE</font><font color="#c0c0c0">ACH</font> <font color="#0000ff"><font color="#c0c0c0">O</font>BAMA</font>!</font></strong></p> </div>
 
A

adrenalynn

Guest
Ok - cross off Arcturus. Video in HD of the flickering/color change. <br /><br />Fomalhaut is rising now. . . <br /><br /><br />[edit] Awww, Man, Fomalhaut isn't in your top ten...<br /><br />Fine. Capella is rising.<br /><br />[edit]<br /><br />Ok - I have your #2 and #4. Now to process 'em. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p>.</p><p><font size="3">bipartisan</font>  (<span style="color:blue" class="pointer"><span class="pron"><font face="Lucida Sans Unicode" size="2">bī-pär'tĭ-zən, -sən</font></span></span>) [Adj.]  Maintaining the ability to blame republications when your stimulus plan proves to be a devastating failure.</p><p><strong><font color="#ff0000"><font color="#ff0000">IMPE</font><font color="#c0c0c0">ACH</font> <font color="#0000ff"><font color="#c0c0c0">O</font>BAMA</font>!</font></strong></p> </div>
 
A

adrenalynn

Guest
Capella first: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2F143umtSZU <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p>.</p><p><font size="3">bipartisan</font>  (<span style="color:blue" class="pointer"><span class="pron"><font face="Lucida Sans Unicode" size="2">bī-pär'tĭ-zən, -sən</font></span></span>) [Adj.]  Maintaining the ability to blame republications when your stimulus plan proves to be a devastating failure.</p><p><strong><font color="#ff0000"><font color="#ff0000">IMPE</font><font color="#c0c0c0">ACH</font> <font color="#0000ff"><font color="#c0c0c0">O</font>BAMA</font>!</font></strong></p> </div>
 
A

adrenalynn

Guest
And Arcturus: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=shg5quUvmzA <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p>.</p><p><font size="3">bipartisan</font>  (<span style="color:blue" class="pointer"><span class="pron"><font face="Lucida Sans Unicode" size="2">bī-pär'tĭ-zən, -sən</font></span></span>) [Adj.]  Maintaining the ability to blame republications when your stimulus plan proves to be a devastating failure.</p><p><strong><font color="#ff0000"><font color="#ff0000">IMPE</font><font color="#c0c0c0">ACH</font> <font color="#0000ff"><font color="#c0c0c0">O</font>BAMA</font>!</font></strong></p> </div>
 
M

MeteorWayne

Guest
Hmm, I counldn't get either one to load. I'll try again later.<br /><br />Edit, I got Capella to load. Very nice color display. Looks like the star wasn't focused perfectly, which actually helps show the color. When using minoculars I'll often slightly defocus them to show the colors better.<br /><br />Thanx!!<br /><br />Can't wait till you get Sirius!!!<br /><br />BTW, Fomalhaut ain't bad, but of course the brighter the star the more photons you have to work with.<br /><br />It also depends a lot on the atmosphere. I noticed in this morning's 4 hour meteor session, there was very little twinkling, even with Sirius.<br /><br />Wayne <br /><br />Edit 2, got Arcturus to work, but I prefer Capella's image.<br />The more I watch it, the more I love it!<br /><br />Thanx very much!! <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font color="#000080"><em><font color="#000000">But the Krell forgot one thing John. Monsters. Monsters from the Id.</font></em> </font></p><p><font color="#000080">I really, really, really, really miss the "first unread post" function</font><font color="#000080"> </font></p> </div>
 
A

adrenalynn

Guest
Thanks Wayne!<br /><br />Capella was actually as tight a focus as could be had. A combination of two things - not the best glass choice, and not the best seeing. It had been storming for a couple days. Much later that night, the seeing became much more transparent. Arcturus was pretty out of focus. I'd done it first, and was still compensating.<br /><br />I've not done much video of the night sky. Very different to photography, and I'm still learning, as it were.<br /><br />Maybe I'll have to get more Sirius about getting Sirius. It has a pretty short window before day-break for me at the moment. High enough above the horizon to get it from my mini-observatory at about 03:30am, but starting to wash-out by 04:40am. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p>.</p><p><font size="3">bipartisan</font>  (<span style="color:blue" class="pointer"><span class="pron"><font face="Lucida Sans Unicode" size="2">bī-pär'tĭ-zən, -sən</font></span></span>) [Adj.]  Maintaining the ability to blame republications when your stimulus plan proves to be a devastating failure.</p><p><strong><font color="#ff0000"><font color="#ff0000">IMPE</font><font color="#c0c0c0">ACH</font> <font color="#0000ff"><font color="#c0c0c0">O</font>BAMA</font>!</font></strong></p> </div>
 
A

adrenalynn

Guest
I wrote a plugin for my planetarium software to display my actual apparent horizon, then plotted the steepest angles I could get. I think at the moment Antares isn't going to work-out on the west coast. <br /><br />The downside to video is that I can't really show the stars in context. I'm kinda thinking of going much wider, and stacking multiple sync'd cameras with longer exposure so that I can show the starfield. As I say - more experimentation for me...<br /><br />Here's your list with my ideal times/compass direction:<br /><br />Observing Sacramento, CA Area. Times in PDT 14-Oct-2007 <br /><br />Sirius.......-1.5....Canis.Major....02:45....SE<br />Arcturus...-0.0....Bootes...........xxx (19:30)<br />Vega........+0.0....Lyra............00:00.....NW<br />Capella.....+0.1...Auriga...........xxx (19:30)<br />Rigel........+0.1...Orion...........01:00....ESE --- 2fer w/Betelgeuse<br />Procyon....+0.4...Canis.Minor.......02:00....E<br />Betelgeuse..+0.5...Orion............01:00....ESE ---<br />Altair....+0.8...Aquila.............00:30....W<br />Aldebaran...+0.9....Taurus..........23:00....ESE<br />Antares.....+1.0....Scorpio.........18:45....Not.Observable <br /><br /><br />[edit] Darn - I have to pick a friend up at the airport. That's going to erase my window for most of these tonight... <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p>.</p><p><font size="3">bipartisan</font>  (<span style="color:blue" class="pointer"><span class="pron"><font face="Lucida Sans Unicode" size="2">bī-pär'tĭ-zən, -sən</font></span></span>) [Adj.]  Maintaining the ability to blame republications when your stimulus plan proves to be a devastating failure.</p><p><strong><font color="#ff0000"><font color="#ff0000">IMPE</font><font color="#c0c0c0">ACH</font> <font color="#0000ff"><font color="#c0c0c0">O</font>BAMA</font>!</font></strong></p> </div>
 
M

MeteorWayne

Guest
Well, the good thing is that Sirius rises earlier every day, in a few months it will be up in the evening!!<br /><br />Then there will be lots of these "what is that red/gree flashing object in the<br />southeast" threads!! <img src="/images/icons/smile.gif" /> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font color="#000080"><em><font color="#000000">But the Krell forgot one thing John. Monsters. Monsters from the Id.</font></em> </font></p><p><font color="#000080">I really, really, really, really miss the "first unread post" function</font><font color="#000080"> </font></p> </div>
 
A

adrenalynn

Guest
So I need to have the best possible video to answer the question when half a dozen people identify it as a UFO, and the rest point-out that it's an airplane flying at you, and you correctly identify it as Sirius, and get ignored, right? <img src="/images/icons/wink.gif" /><br /><br /><--- Runs out to get video of swamp-gas... <br /><br />[edit to add:] I'm going to play with a CCTV (security) camera at prime focus on my smallest scope (NexStar 5) tonight. I believe I have a color camera with a Sony ExView imager that I can gut. If not, I may have to raid the warehouse... At the very least, I'm sure I have a couple HyperHADs lying around. And you know, my Canon 20D will sustain 5fps on JPEG instead of RAW. A little rough on the shutter, though... So many options. I'd really like to be able to record the starfield too. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p>.</p><p><font size="3">bipartisan</font>  (<span style="color:blue" class="pointer"><span class="pron"><font face="Lucida Sans Unicode" size="2">bī-pär'tĭ-zən, -sən</font></span></span>) [Adj.]  Maintaining the ability to blame republications when your stimulus plan proves to be a devastating failure.</p><p><strong><font color="#ff0000"><font color="#ff0000">IMPE</font><font color="#c0c0c0">ACH</font> <font color="#0000ff"><font color="#c0c0c0">O</font>BAMA</font>!</font></strong></p> </div>
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

ASK THE COMMUNITY

Latest posts