LtE in CMO #275

From Thomas A DOBBINS

® . . . . . . . .Date: Wed, 23 July 2003 22:46:24 -0400

To: <>

Subject: Mars Reflection Flare


Dear Paul:


A truly splendid observation, and a very gratifying one in that it is in keeping with what theory and geometry would predict! Congratulations - you are now a member of a remarkably select group - only three dozen observers or so have ever witnessed these phenomena!


Please see



The CM at 9:53 UT on 22 July was 85.5 degrees; the Declination of the Sun from Mars was 20.0 degrees South; the Declination of the Earth from Mars was 17.7 degrees South.  Your description "just to the northeast of Solis Lacus in the direction of Mare Sirenum" would put the site of the flare near Phasis, just north of 20 degrees South latitude; geometry for a non-inclined specular reflector on Mars predicts (20.0 + 17.7)/2 = 18.9 degrees South latitude.  In the absence of a sketch, I can only  make an educated guess about the longitude, but it would seem to be around 110 degrees, suggesting that the reflector was appreciably inclined on an east-west axis in a fashion eerily similar to the 2001 flares at Edom!


If you wish, I can send an illustrated Word-format document with detailed information about these phenomena; the file size is about 800 kB, so I thought it wise to ask permission in advance rather than forgiveness after the fact.


Kind regards,


Tom Dobbins



  ----- Original Message -----



  Cc: ; ;

  Sent: Wednesday, July 23, 2003 9:58 AM

  Subject: Mars Reflection Flare





  Dr. Parker has asked me to elaborate on the flare I observed from my location is in Ft. Myers, Florida on the morning of July 22.  I was using my C14 at 411x with an AP/Baader Binoviewer barlowed with 19 mm Televue Panoptic EP's.  Seeing was a 9 out of 10.  I estimated seeing at 0.5 arc seconds with very slight undulations as varying air pockets moved through.  Transparency was 6/7 mainly due to early morning humidity levels.  I need to correct my previous email due to a typo.  It was around 9:50 UT, not 10:50 as previously emailed.


  At 9:50 UT I was making out very good detail from Aurorae Sinus through Solis Lacus and into Mare Sirenum.  I estimate the central meridian was around 85 degrees.  At approx. 9:53 UT I noticed a quick bright flash just to the NE of Solis Lacus in-between Mare Sirenum.  It was followed by a second dimmer glint approximately 5 seconds later.  The first flash I would estimate to have lasted approximately ~1 second.  This immediately drew my eye to this region and allowed me to see the follow up glint that was less than 1 second.  I saw nothing further after that.


  Subsequently, I observed the same region this morning (July 23) from 2:30 a.m. EST until 5:50 a.m. EST to see if it would be duplicated.  I cannot claim to have seen anything additional at this point.


  I would certainly appreciate you keeping my informed should you have similar results in this area.


  Paul Atkinson


 Tom DOBBINS  (Coshocton, OH, USA)

 Back to the LtE Home Page

 Jump to the LtE Archives


Back to the CMO Home Page