View Full Version : Can you figure out the altitude of this jet?

07-29-2005, 05:02 AM
Here is a jet just east of a large chemical plant near Channelview Texas fifteen miles from Bush Intercontinental Airport
At first I thought it was a flying very low, but I couldn't spot the shadow.
I measured its wingspan at 173 ft.
Challenge 1: identify the aircraft.
Challenge 2: can you determine it's altitude from a ratio of the measured wingspan and it's actual? Would you need the height of the satellite? A shadow to triangulate with? I have no idea?

07-29-2005, 05:39 AM
From your measurements, it is closest to a Boeing 767-400ER, which has a wing span of around 170 ft. But providing for errors in estimation, it can be one of the varients of the airbus A330, or even one of the newer twin engine planes. Its hard to tell some of the most destinguising features from the top down view, like the shape of the nose from a profile.

Its probably pretty high, if it just took off, looks like they made a slight turn already and during that distance an airplane can get high enough to make the shadow far away at the apparent low angle of the sun. As for the shadow, we might never see it because where it would logically be, just north of the oil refinery, the shadow's angle changes (From about 45 degrees North of West, to about 20 degrees East of North.), demonstrating that areas just norht of the oil plant is from a different time.