Finding a Satellite in Geosynchronous Orbit

Last night I was taking pictures of the Milky Way, and decided to zoom into the center and see what it looked like for a 30s. exposure. Of course the star trails all became quite long as their position shifted relative to the camera lens, over the 30 seconds of the exposure.

Except for a white dot in the upper left edge of my second photo below. This dot didn’t shift position during the exposure, meaning it was rotating at the exact same speed as the earth does – an object in geosynchronous orbit. The camera was aimed due south.

From Google: “A geosynchronous orbit is a high Earth orbit that allows satellites to match Earth’s rotation. Located at 22,236 miles (35,786 kilometers) above Earth’s equator, this position is a valuable spot for monitoring weather, communications and surveillance.”

The inset in the picture shows a close-up of the satellite, showing a large dish transmitter on the craft.

Please enjoy these two photos; first of the Milky Way, and the other of the satellite:

Published by Jim Flanegin

it shows up in the pictures...I am a US citizen (born in California), though spent my childhood through high school living primarily in SE Asia, giving me a deep view of both East and West.

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