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Proceedings Paper

Spacecraft Glow
Author(s): A . J. Dessler
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Paper Abstract

Spacecraft glow may be defined as optical emissions originating immediately above those surfaces of an orbiting spacecraft that face into the ram direction. The glow is observed to extend from the spacecraft surface out about 20 cm and, for the Space Shuttle at its lower orbital altitudes, is bright enough to be seen by the unaided eye. The glow is brightest in the yellow and red end of the spectrum. Measurements show that the brightness rises rapidly toward the red end of the spectrum and is last seen still rising toward the infra-red (IR). Although there are no direct measurements, both extrapolation of available data as well as theoretical arguments indicate the glow is brightest in the infra-red.

Paper Details

Date Published: 23 October 1984
PDF: 3 pages
Proc. SPIE 0493, Optical Platforms, (23 October 1984); doi: 10.1117/12.943823
Show Author Affiliations
A . J. Dessler, Marshall Space Flight Center (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 0493:
Optical Platforms
Charles L. Wyman, Editor(s)

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