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Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 30
02-27-2012, 07:59 AM
Originally Posted by Barihawk View Post
However, from the ground it would just look like any other satellite in orbit. Just a tiny light in the sky, barely brighter.
I agree. Let's throw some numbers on that. I'm guessing ESD is about 5 kilometers or so wide. At geo, 37,000km, it would subtend about .00014 radians, or about .5 arc-minutes (or 1/120th of a degree). To give an idea of the size, the bottom line on a eye chart has the letter about 1 arc minute apart.

Venus, the bright object in the west after sunset, can be as big as 1 arc minute. So ESD would be clearly visible, and pretty bright (after all it's white) - probably the fourth or fifth brightest object in the sky. It would be a sight to see in even a small telescope.