Decay watch: 2000 Feb 17

From: Alan Pickup (
Date: Thu Feb 17 2000 - 14:39:07 PST

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    #25769 = 99- 30 B = Starshine
    This is now into its final 24 hours. My latest prediction is for decay
    at Feb 18 16:44 UTC +-5h at 20.0 S, 162.7 E while SpaceCom's latest is
    for decay at Feb 18 17:22 +-6h at 2.2 N, 41.6 W.
    Against the prediction I posted yesterday, this was running 10 seconds
    late at the epoch of the latest elset. My new estimate is much more in
    line with predictions by Harro and SpaceCom - unfortunately, SatEvo has
    been having difficulty with Starshine's almost perfectly circular orbit.
    I calculate that the final orbit...
    Starshine        1.0  0.0  0.0  9.0 d 0.30       131 x 130 km
    1 25769U 99030B   00049.66275087  .57054002  49145+1  37361-3 0 93334
    2 25769  51.5727   5.1953 0000976 256.7415 103.2477 16.53498915 42127
    ...will begin with a northwards crossing of the equator at 15:54 UTC
    between Brazil and Africa. It crosses NW Africa in daylight from
    Conakry, Guinea, at 15:57 to Tunis at 16:06. It crosses S Italy to
    Bucharest, Romania, at 16:10, then Russia to NE China 
    where it passes SW of Beijing at 16:25. It then heads out over the E
    China Sea and the W Pacific. I put the decay near the island of New
    Caledonia, to the NE of Australia. If it survives, the orbit then takes
    it to the N of New Zealand and across the S Pacific to reach Santiago,
    Chile, at 17:10. The track then curves northwards across S America to
    another northbound equator crossing off the mouth of the Amazon, Brazil,
    at 17:21. USSPACECOM places the decay near here. If it survives further,
    the track takes it across Europe from Madrid, Spain, at 17:35 to Munich,
    Germany, at 17:38, and just N of Kiev, Ukraine, at 17:41.
    #25911 = 99- 49 E = Globalstar 33 Soyuz r
    SpaceCom's final notices are overdue, its last one (issued at 10:25 UTC)
    being for decay at Feb 17 14:59 +-3h at 27.0 S, 164.4 W. I show decay
    while this was southbound over SW Africa, to the S of Luanda, Angola, at
    Feb 17 17:18 +-90m (13.5 S, 13.2 E), If it survived, it might have
    passed near Johannesburg, S Africa, at 17:22 UTC. My elset for the final
    See for more, plus updates
    on the Starshine decay over the final hours.
     Alan Pickup | COSPAR 2707:  55d53m48.7s N  3d11m51.2s W   156m asl
     Edinburgh   | Tel: +44 (0)131 477 9144     Fax: +44 (0)870 0520750
     Scotland    | SatEvo page:
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