Explorer 7 - SpaceCom's black magic

From: Harro.Zimmer (Harro.Zimmer@t-online.de)
Date: Thu Apr 27 2000 - 12:29:41 PDT

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    As Alan mentioned in his April 26 DECAY WATCH SpaceCom has issued a decay
    prediction for 1959-009A (#00022) Explorer 7 prepared on 20 February 2088 (!) :
     The decay date:  27 February 2088 01:22 UTC +/- 02 minutes (27.2S, 0.1E)
    You can see this stuff with frequently updated ELSET's also today on the TIP
    message board via OIG.
     The old satellite is in a stable orbit - 519.29 / 827.458 km - with i = 50.3.
    The lifetime estimates in the early sixties gave Explorer 7 about 50 years.
    With a special long range prediction program here is a calculation of a more 
    precise decay date:         April 10, 2011 +/- 06 months 
    I have assume a "normal" behavior of the solar activity over the next decade.
    This time frame looks quite more realistic then SpaceCom's black magic.
    Berlin, Germany
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