66-05N is interesting!

Eberst (eberst@cableinet.co.uk)
Wed, 15 Jan 1997 18:03:37 GMT

Leo Barhorst has reported an interesting observation of 66-05N, flashing
up to magnitude +5. This would indicate that it is reasonably sized with
RCS around 1 sq. metre.  An object of that size would have been detected
easily over the 30+ years since that launch, so it seems that it has
appeared recently. Inspection of its elements show that it probably split
from 66-05A. These two objects are now 8-9 minutes apart and steadily
separating. They would have been close at the beginning of DECEMBER,
possibly closest around Dec 6.0 (any better estimates from COLA users?)
This scenario has echoes of the Cerise and 86-19RF collision. So could
66005 A have collided with something around December 6?
I do not have many element sets for 66005 A but there may have been a jump
in its revs/day from 13.6459 to 13.6461

1 01952U 66005  A  97003.57722912 .00000081 00000-0  76279-4 00    0
2 01952 089.9441 212.2995 0225294 341.3178 017.9797 13.64610273    0

1 24704U 66005  N  97003.05795819 .00004381 00000-0  44343-2 00    0
2 24704 089.9542 212.3177 0241010 343.1871 016.1364 13.65025231    0
 
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best wishes               Russell  Eberst
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