Unknowns 02/05April 2005

From: Greg Roberts (grr@iafrica.com)
Date: Wed Apr 06 2005 - 12:09:05 EDT

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    Observations 02 and 05 APRIL 2005
    -------------------------------------------
    Cosatrak 1 (Computerised satellite Tracking System).
    MINTRON low light level CCD surveillance camera (0.005 lux typical
    in non integration mode) and 0.00005 lux in STARLIGHT mode with 128
    frame integration.
    
    Used with 145mm focal length f/2.5 lens giving a field of view of
    about 2.55 x 1.86 degrees and easily showing 12th magnitude stars.
    Not the best lens optically but the most useful in terms of field
    of view and magnitude penetration.
    
    Data recorded on DVD R/W disks - will be kept for 1 month and then
    re-used - just in case any queries as Im always making mistakes!
    
    Site 0433 : Longitude 18.51294 deg East, Latitude  33.94058 deg S,
    Elevation 10 metres - situated in Pinelands (Cape Town), South Africa
    
    Three unknowns found so far:
    ----------------------------------
    
    NO 1  - HIGH ALTITUDE - STEADY
    91020 05 092H   0433 G 20050402192029400 17 15 0927091-043003 39  +110 05
    91020 05 092H   0433 G 20050402192058700 17 15 0924587-051445 39
    91020 05 092H   0433 G 20050402192103600 17 15 0924352-052253 39
    91020 05 092H   0433 G 20050402192110900 17 15 0923539-053533 39
    91020 05 092H   0433 G 20050402192118200 17 15 0923128-054458 39
    91020 05 092H   0433 G 20050402192128000 17 15 0922212-055709 39
    91020 05 092H   0433 G 20050402192132900 17 15 0921559-060239 39
    
    NO 2 - UNKNOWN GEOSTATIONARY - BRIGHT!
    92021 05 092G   0433 G 20050402200101200 17 15 1046268+085215 39 S+088 05
    92021 05 092G   0433 G 20050402200255200 17 15 1048242+085152 39 S+088 05
    92021 05 092G   0433 G 20050402200349000 17 15 1049224+085038 39 S+088 05
    92021 05 092G   0433 G 20050402201059000 17 15 1056276+084751 39 S+088 05
    92021 05 092G   0433 G 20050402201205600 17 15 1057311+084659 39 S+088 05
    92021 05 092G   0433 G 20050402201304500 17 15 1058346+084633 39 S+088 05
    
    NO 3 - MEDIUM ALTITUDE - VARIABLE
    91022 05 095M  0433 G 20050405174600600 17 15 0716122+073746 39 S
    91022 05 095M  0433 G 20050405174607400 17 15 0717126+072738 39 S
    91022 05 095M  0433 G 20050405174611500 17 15 0717487+072149 39 S
    91022 05 095M  0433 G 20050405174616900 17 15 0718383+071348 39 S
    90122 05 095M  0433 G 20050405174619700 17 15 0719034+071007 39 S+093 05
    91022 05 095M  0433 G 20050405174626500 17 15 0720009+065909 39 S+091 05
    91022 05 095M  0433 G 20050405174634700 17 15 0721150+064644 39 S+096 05
    
    Notes:
    -------
    (1) The above have so far been found during my scanning of the geostationary
        belt. I have been unable to find matches for them in my element
        databases so either I am missing the elements or the satellites are
        not catalogued.
    
    (2) No 1 - Slow moving satellite - the trace on the image looks about
        magnitude 11 but the satellite is probably at least a magnitude or two
        brighter.It appeared steady during the time it took to cross the field
        of view.
    
    (3) No 2  - a BRIGHT geostationary observed in 6 images as I scanned across
        the area. There were no known geostationaries close to the area. It
        appeared to be a "normal" geostationary with a slow movement southwards
        but the image was not trailed which would have suggested non-geostationary.
        It appears as bright as #90013 which I had previously regarded as the
        brightest geostationary in my visible sky. This one will get priority
        next time the sky clears:-))
    
    (4) No 3 - at a rough(!) guess the height of the satellite is less than
        10000 kms - ie not a high altitude satellite. It is definately variable
        with a short period but impossible to say what the period is.Again
        the magnitude given is that of the satellite trail so it is probably a
        magnitude or so brighter in reality.
    
    (5) I have still to finish examining my scans of the 2nd and 5th April so
        the identified objects will be reported tomorrow (?).
    
    (6) I KNOW Ive made a muck-up of giving the objects a designation but the 
    required
          information is on another hard drive not currently in this particular PC 
    and Im
          rather pushed for time at the moment- anyway the only one likely to be 
    observed
          again is the geostationary. I thought I understood the naming convention 
    but found
          out otherwise - will try better next time!
    
    Cheers
    Greg
    
    
    
    
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