RE: cosmos 1220 ?

From: Matson, Robert (ROBERT.D.MATSON@saic.com)
Date: Tue Feb 20 2001 - 16:34:08 PST

  • Next message: Ed Cannon: "Re: cosmos 1220 ?"

    Hi Ken,
    
    > I have a question concerning a possible sighting of
    > cosmos 1220. I was out last night (2/19) and saw a
    > fairly bright object (2 to 2.5) going from north to
    > southeast. After doing some checking, it turns out
    > that cosmos 1220 was going along the same track at the
    > correct time.
    
    If culmination was around 18:46 EST, 35 degrees above the
    east-northeast, then Cosmos 1220 is a good match.
    
    > Heavens-above has the pass at 4.6 magnitude.
    
    SkyMap gives 4.1 -- still quite a bit dimmer than what you
    observed.  There may be a specular component to the brightness,
    however, and the phase angle was quite good for this pass
    (within 20 degrees of full-phase at one point).
    
    > Is it possible that estimation for the satellite brightness was
    > that much off?
    
    Yes, since the standard magnitudes on which satellite brightness
    are based represent "average" values for a satellite having
    those dimensions.
    
    Best,
    Rob
    
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