APOD: The Great Meteor Procession of 1913 (2013 Feb 09)

Comments and questions about the APOD on the main view screen.
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Chris Peterson
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Re: What are the two stars to the right of Orion?

Post by Chris Peterson » Sun Feb 10, 2013 5:19 pm

Brad Schaefer wrote:The APOD shows two bright stars to the right of Orion and above the Procession. What are those two stars? They don't appear in any of the other versions of the the Hahn painting. Judging from their relative positions to Orion, they are roughly at declination of 3° to 6°. (Note also that the reddish colored Betelgeuse is substantially set lower in declination, by perhaps 3°, than it really appears.) The stars (other than Betelgeuse) are depicted with comparable white size dots, with the Orion stars being from magnitude 0.3 to 2.2; so presumably the two stars on the right are somewhere in that range. I have checked Voyager (a good planetarium program) for that date and time and location, and there are no bright stars or planets in that region to the right of Orion. So what are those stars? One possibility is that they represent Aldebaran (magnitude 1.0, declination 16°) and Saturn (magnitude 0.1, declination 17°). But this possibility is poor because those candidates are far to the north of the represented position and the Aldebaran-candidate is not painted reddish (like Betelgeuse). Another possibility is that the two stars were added for some artistic reason. And why only in this version of the painting?
Isn't it most likely that all the stars were added for artistic reasons, and that except for Orion, which is well known, anything else is simply arbitrarily placed?
Chris

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LarryHuber367

Re: APOD: The Great Meteor Procession of 1913 (2013 Feb 09)

Post by LarryHuber367 » Mon Feb 11, 2013 1:57 pm

Did anyone notice the similarity between the painting and the photos from the Columbia Shuttle disaster in February 2003?
https://www.google.com/search?q=columbi ... 80&bih=677

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Chris Peterson
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Re: APOD: The Great Meteor Procession of 1913 (2013 Feb 09)

Post by Chris Peterson » Mon Feb 11, 2013 3:16 pm

LarryHuber367 wrote:Did anyone notice the similarity between the painting and the photos from the Columbia Shuttle disaster in February 2003?
Long slow fireballs frequently look similar to man-made objects breaking up in the atmosphere. There are many videos of both natural and artificial objects breaking up. The main difference is speed- objects decaying from Earth orbit start at about 8 km/s, whereas objects that were in solar orbit never strike us at less than 11 km/s (and is usually higher). That's why reentering space debris usually produces longer paths.
Chris

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