Skipper visibility
Tue, 23 Jan 1996 15:46:08 +0100

Leo Barhorst gave the following info:

> Shape is a cilinder, 0.8 m diameter and 1.3 m long. Satellite is to  =20
> aerothermochemistry and aerobraking as it dips into the atmosphere.  =20
> checkout the satellite will manoeuvre to a 150 km perigee orbit and  =20
> perigee will be reduced in 10 km steps until orbital dacay takes  =20
> Mass is 230 kg.
> Seems to be a bit too small to be easely visible, as its apogee will be =20=
close to
> 800 km. At perigee it will be moving very fast.

I believe the standard magnitude would be 7.0 at best. Skipper is in a
sun-synchronous orbit, invisible to most northern observers. Shadow entry
is around 40S, exit around 74N, both moving slowly S.
When the perigee is lowered, both will move closer to the nearest pole,
unless one of them happens to be near the new apogee.

The exit point is about 18 degrees above my northern at about 2000 local  =20
( at lat.59N ), and the magnitude +9 or fainter, and we don't seem to get
any clear skies this week.

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