Re: USA 326 flyby by Kosmos 2558

From: Marco Langbroek via Seesat-l <seesat-l_at_satobs.org>
Date: Sun, 7 Aug 2022 16:52:56 +0200
Op 6-8-2022 om 22:09 schreef Allen Thomson:

> Can you calculate the sun-USA-Kosmos angle during the encounter? I.e., how illuminated by the sun was the US satellite as seen by the Russian one? Zero degrees would be fully illuminated, 180 fully shadowed (and have the Kosmos looking at the sun, which would be a bad idea).


That is a good point! I get an elevation difference of about 16 degrees the Sun 
and USA 326 as seen from Kosmos 2558 at that time, so not ideal.

Fred Jansen also made a pertinent remark: from launch to fully operational in a 
mere 3 days would be awfully fast.

But: as the satellites share virtually the same orbital plane, these encounters 
will repeat at intervals. So if it did not image USA 326 at this time, there 
will be more opportunities in the future.

Due to the small difference in orbital altitude, the RAAN of both satellite 
orbits will slowly start to diverge (at about a rate of 0.01 degree/day). So it 
will be interesting to see whether Kosmos 2558 at some point will adjust its 
orbit (and maybe raise it even closer to USA 326).

- Marco


-----
Dr Marco Langbroek  -  SatTrackCam Leiden, the Netherlands.
e-mail: sattrackcam_at_langbroek.org

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Received on Sun Aug 07 2022 - 09:53:36 UTC

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