Re: The return of Superbird A

Ed Cannon (ecannon@mail.utexas.edu)
Thu, 28 Aug 1997 14:14:42 -0400

Last night (~3:30 UT Thursday, Aug. 28), before time to look for the 
UNID GTO, Mike M. aimed his 8" (20.32 cm) telescope in the direction 
of Superbird A.  Mike saw a flash at about 3:35 UT.  There were more 
flashes, maximum mag. about 7.x, and Mike timed them at approx. 11.4 
and 12.0 for a period of 23.4 seconds.  The flashes began to dim and 
were last seen about 3:44 or 45 UT, when the satellite entered the 
Earth's shadow.  Observing location was BCRC, Austin, Texas: 
30.314N, 97.866W, 284.4m (920 ft.)  I saw a few of the flashes in 
the eyepiece but could not see them in his finder scope.

20040
1 20040U 89041A   97229.38058320 -.00000298  00000-0  10000-3 0  9428
2 20040   5.3359  59.5471 0008952  68.2557 291.9156  0.99750748 29420

Highfly.exe output:

   30.315  97.866  920.   BCRC, Austin, TX         1950  7.5 18
 
*** 1997 Aug 27/28   Wed evening/Thu morning  *** Times are CDT 
 
Hrs Min  Alt Azi  Mag    Hgt    R  A    Dec  Range
 
20040 Superbird A    89-041A      M-3.0 ELDY 11 M2   -2

 22  35   34 131  5.2  22354  22  3.5 -10.9  23873
 22  36   34 131  5.2  22354  22  4.5 -10.9  23873
 22  37   34 131  5.2  22354  22  5.5 -10.9  23873
 22  38   34 131  5.2  22354  22  6.5 -10.9  23873
 22  39   34 131  5.2  22354  22  7.5 -10.9  23873
 22  40   34 131  5.2  22354  22  8.5 -10.9  23873
 22  41   34 131  5.2  22354  22  9.5 -10.9  23873
 22  42   34 131  5.2  22354  22 10.5 -10.9  23873
 22  43   34 131  5.2  22354  22 11.5 -10.9  23873
 22  44   34 131  5.2  22354  22 12.5 -10.9  23873 
 23  45   35 131  5.2  22351  23 13.5 -10.8  23861

Note one-hour (shadow passage) gap between the last two 
predictions.

Ed Cannon
Austin, Texas, USA
30.3086N, 97.7279W, 165m