GPS 2R-2 Obs, 25 Jul 97

Ron Lee (
Thu, 24 Jul 1997 22:27:39 -0600 (MDT)

Again saw all three objects from this recent launch tonight.

The payload, #24876, has multiple flashes (at least 2) per second.
Although not timed, I am apparently seeing flashes off of different
parts during the same revolution.   Some are brighter than others.

The transfer rocket body, #24878, did nothing special.  As it left
the field of view, I "thought" it may have dimmed, but since I did
not track it, it will be assumed to be imagined at this point.

These objects were seen about 03:17 and 03:14 UT, 25 Jul 97,

The Delta II rocket body, #24877, was observed at 04:03 UT.  Initially
it was faint in binocs but then brightened and faded.  Then it brightened
in the south to easy naked eye visibility.  Thus it "may" be tumbling
with a period of about two minutes.  Or this may have been a phase
angle effect.   I observed it for a longer period than last night so
this would not have been noticed last night.

Also observed #4813 in the telescope while waiting for GPS 2R-2.

Now waiting for good visibilities of Vanguard 1 to verify an earlier
obs in the 8" telescope.

Superbird A should be appearing again within a month I hope.  Anyone
want to guess as to the flash time?

Ron Lee