Recent Obs

From: Mir16609@aol.com
Date: Tue Apr 11 2000 - 10:34:42 PDT

  • Next message: Mark A. Hanning-Lee: "3 flares in 1 night"

    Better late than never, I suppose.
    
    99- 39 B 00-04-07 01:02:20.5 JDG  62.5 0.3  24  2.60  3.5->inv
    99- 39 B 00-04-08 01:29:29.5 JDG  86.5 0.3  33  2.62  3.0->inv
    77- 44 A 00-04-07 01:57:48.2 JDG  30.1 0.3  11  2.74  5.0->inv
    89- 41 A 00-04-07 03:15:08.0 JDG 241.9 0.3  21 11.52  4.0->inv
    89- 41 A 00-04-08 03:18:30.5 JDG 425.5 0.3  37 11.50  4.0->inv
    
    Didn't the peak time for Superbird A used to move from E->W?   I've been 
    reading Ron Lee's posts and his peak time are somewhat earlier than mine.  
    
    I never know what to expect from Spot 3.  Sometime the flashes are gradual.  
    Sometime there are strobe-like flashes.  The most interesting pass was on 7 
    April (UTC).  There were sharp flashes at:
    02:46:29 and 02:46:49
    followed by the gradual flashes at:
    02:47:05.2
    02:47:10.0
    02:47:25.2
    02:47:30.9
    02:47:44.5
    02:47:50.5
    02:48:04.0
    02:48:10.8
    02:48:24.7
    02:48:30.4
    02:48:43.5
    02:48:49.6
    02:49:02.1
    02:49:09.5
    Interesting pattern.
    
    Iridium 43 flared to the predicted -1 mag at 00:42:01 on 8 April.  Iridium 72 
    flared to the predicted +2 mag at about 30 seconds early at 01:20:30 on 8 
    April.  Iridium 65 flared to the predicted -8 mag at 01:07:52 UTC on 10 April.
    
    Sunsat (25636, 99008C) had an interesting pass on 01:33 UTC 8 April.  I could 
    not acquire it with my 6" Dob as it passed between beta and gamma UMi 
    (22az,39el). About a minute later I acquired it between beta and gamma UMa 
    (40az, 65el) at about a +5.5 mag.  It remained at this brightness until it 
    went invisible at about 01:36 as it passed beta Leo.  Sunsat was a non-obs 
    during a 68 deg N->S pass in the west using 7x50s on 01:54 UTC 10 April.  
    There was a moderate haze and moonlight that may have been a factor.
    
    Question:
    What is the most accurate method (Web Site, GPS, Map extrapolation, etc) of 
    determining one's latitude, longitude and altitude? (The three "tudes"?  
    :-)).  I get different values with different web sites and the GPS that I'm 
    using drifts quite a bit.  Some of the LEO objects that I track with my Dob 
    seem to be offset by some amount and I'm questioning the accuracy of my 
    assumed location.  Positional Observation page of the VSOHP recommends an 
    accuracy of 0.1 second.  The best repeatable accuracy I'm finding is about 
    0.001 degree.  Any suggestions?
    
    Cheers
    Don Gardner  39.1801 N, 76.8418 W, 110m ASL (or thereabouts)
    Homepage: http://hometown.aol.com/mir16609/ 
    
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