Flare drought

19 Feb 1998 17:14:14 -0500

Hi All,

Using Alan Pickup's latest propagated element set for Cosmos 2349 Soyuz r
(#25168, 98-009B) (i.e. the one closest to decay), I see that there's at =
a chance that the reentry will occur over the continental U.S.  The track
passes over eastern Maine/western New Brunswick and the southwest
tip of Nova Scotia on 20 Feb 1998 around 22:34 EST on a descending

On the next orbit the track crosses into the U.S. from Ontario to the
eastern tip of Minnesota at about 23:00:30 CST.  In a matter of seconds,
the track is over Lake Superior.  It crosses over the Apostle Islands and
into mainland Wisconsin at 23:01:00 CST, right at the Michigan border.

The track continues over Wausau, Wisconsin (23:01:30 CST), and
directly over Milwaukee at 23:02.  The next 20 seconds are over Lake
Michigan, just off-shore from Chicago.  Gary, Indiana is next at about
23:02:30 CST (which is actually 21 Feb 00:02:30 EST).  Indianapolis
is close to the centerline at 00:03:00.

The rocket body crosses into Kentucky at 00:03:15, a bit northeast
of Louisville.  A minute later, it crosses into Tennessee, just west of
the tip of Virginia.  Knoxville is on the centerline at 00:04:00.  The
western tip of North Carolina is visited briefly before crossing into
Georgia where the Carolinas and Georgia meet.  Athens, Georgia,
is close at 00:04:30; at 00:05:00 the ground track is about 60 miles
west of Savannah.

The cross into Florida is at about 00:05:20, right at the coast (NE of
Jacksonville).  The track parallels the Florida coastline, passing over
Jacksonville Beach, St. Augustine, Daytona Beach, Kennedy Space
Center, Cocoa Beach, Melbourne and West Palm Beach before
moving out over the Atlantic at 00:06:20.  (Cuba and Jamaica both
get crossed).

On the next rev, the "lucky" states are western Montana, western
Wyoming, western Colorado, central New Mexico and western
Texas.  The ground track enters Montana north of Kalispell and
passes close to Butte, Montana, at 23:28:30 MST.  It crosses into
Wyoming at Yellowstone National Park at 23:29:00, and into
Colorado in its northwest corner at 23:30:00.  All the major cities
in Colorado are missed, but Grand Junction, Glenwood Springs,
Montrose, Telluride, Aspen and Durango will all have nice views
if the Soyuz rocket decides to come in at that time.

The ground track crosses into New Mexico at 23:31 MST, and is
south of Sante Fe and east of Albuquerque at 23:31:30.  Roswell
is "visited" at 23:32, as is Carlsbad, NM a few seconds later.

Western-most Texas is crossed from 23:32:20 - 23:33, followed by
mainland Mexico from 23:33 to 23:36:30.  The ground track is back
over water (Pacific Ocean) east of Acapulco.

The elements used for the above predictions are:

C 2349 Soyuz r                                   169 x 150 km
1 25168U 98009B   98052.00480055  .13396448  12259+0  52144-3 0 90135
2 25168  70.3788 338.5345 0014856  63.3382 296.8139 16.42397978   584