Re: Flashing geosynchs over Americas

From: Tony Beresford (
Date: Thu Aug 29 2002 - 10:09:55 EDT

  • Next message: David Brierley: "DMB Obs Aug 12-13"

    [This was sent to Paul Gabriel earlier, And I omitted
    to send it to list at that time - ACB]
    At 01:30 29/08/02, you wrote:
    >G23 is ~ 252+20 around 0500 ut tonight, I should still
    >see it thru the niche in the roof.
    >but I will go nuts searching for others, ie, parking
    >on a az/el and waiting for a flash, if I don't see it,
    >is it flashing yet, or am I in wrong place ??  seems to
    >me I must get some sort of "setting circles" for my
    >locking bino mount, then it would relieve some 'frustration.'
    >that's the nice thing about pos obs, ether you see it or you
    >don't and it's over in a few minutes, even when I miss
    >23233 lately, I look, and its over...  but gee, I could
    >be looking for some flasher for hours and never see it?
    >must be some guidelines to this I don't understand.
    Paul, without knowing the orientation of the spacecraft spin axis, like
    has been determined accurately for Superbird A, and approximately
    for some others (including gorizont23 ), one cant predict start times.
    So One just plots the track among the stars and uninterrupted looks for at least 2 periods every 5 minutes. Back in 1998 that how I determined by
    observation that ETS-6 appeared every 3 nights on same path!
    Which of course made its identification obvious. Rather tedious but
    With regard to alternative technolgies, there is a firm advertising in 
    S&T which sells an image intensified eyepiece. You can also purchase
    a .0003 lux TV camera from a texas firm ( )
    for US$129. It gets to mag 9-10 with a 82mm aperture lense ( I have
    both pieces of equipment). Another alternative is the sort of setup
    used by video meteor observers with a coupled image intensifier 
    and TV camera and frame grabber in a PC ( See S&T march 2001 article
    by Sirko Molau )
    A sensitive TV camera with a moderate FL lense to give say a
    5 degree FOV would seem to be best bet for doing initial exploration
    on a geoflasher
    Tony Beresford
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