Superbird A in 16" scope

Ed Cannon (
Tue, 08 Apr 1997 05:36:24 -0500

Sue Worden described how last Saturday night Mike McCants located TIPS in 
his 16" telescope and allowed a number of us to observe it.  Later on, 
after Sue went on her way and after observations of various deep-space 
objects, Mike acquired Superbird A (20040, 89-041A) shortly after midnight 
local time (6 April, 6:0x UT -- just a couple of hours before change to 
daylight time).  About 5 people observed it for perhaps one-half hour.  No 
bright flashes were observed.  Mike said we were seeing tumbles at about 
mag. 11.  They were at the full 23.x period.  It was mostly invisible 
between the tumbles.  It is getting pretty low in our sky, at about 24-25 
degrees above the southwest horizon that night; plus, by that time there 
were some broken, very thin high clouds possibly interfering a little.

For the record, Sunday night (6 April) at Bee Cave Research Center (not 
as dark as Pedernales Falls but still a nice site) was a good night.  
Lacrosse 2 (21147, 91-17A) was easy "naked-eye" here.  ("Naked-eye" is a 
misnomer, since I wear glasses, but I'm don't know of another term....)  
I also saw eight others naked-eye, along with several more, including 
TIPS, in Mike's 8" scope.

Ed Cannon
Austin, Texas, USA
30.308N, 97.728W