Nice flashing of Topex Poseidon

Date: Wed Aug 03 2011 - 17:50:21 UTC

  • Next message: Bram Dorreman: "PPAS obs 4160 (BD) 2011-07-09,10"

    Hi Bram,
    I serendipitously observed a nice flashing satellite on July 31 for less than a minute around 21h 55.3m UT with the naked eye in the SGE, CYG, PEG area.
    Using Calsky I identified it later as Topex-Poseidon 1992-52A (object 22076) i=66°.
    The variation in brigthness was complex and irregular, essentially a few very brief flashes at mag 3 or even brighter, most of time the satellite remaining invisible.
    I lost the satellite when the flashes vanished as I couldn't find it again using binoculars. No photometric period was derived, yet it is clearly a matter of only a few seconds (4 ??).
    Alain Figer
    48.67°N , 2.13° E, 170 m a.s.l.
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