A spy satellite winked at me last night.

First, some background. I've noted before about the e-mail alerts I signed up for from the Celestial Observer (CalSKY.com) website . A few weeks ago, I opened the bulletin for upcoming Iridium flares, but it wasn't for an Iridium satellite — it was for a weather satellite. The prediction came qualified with: "This is an experimental flare prediction. Brightness estimate may be unreliable. Please report a successful observation."

I attempted to see it, but I didn't. I might not have been in the right place, because I didn't walk too far from my house, so it could have been behind the building. My girlfriend, however, saw the sun glint 15 miles west of me at the appointed time.

Yesterday morning my Iridium alert noted a different glinting spacecraft. This time it was a Lacrosse satellite, a secret US government radar-imaging spacecraft. At 9:09:36 p.m. (well after Survivor), I indeed saw it. A few miles away, Tony Flanders saw it too.

Now I have to report the success.


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