Iridium 46 and SPOT 3 updates

Ed Cannon (ecannon@mail.utexas.edu)
Mon, 20 Jul 1998 03:01:19 -0500

In June, Paul Maley reported that Iridium 46 was tumbling 
[SeeSat article "Iridium 46 observed," MALEY, PAUL D. (paul.d.maley1@jsc.nasa.gov) Tue, 2 Jun 1998 06:23:42 -0500].
That can be found on the SeeSat hypermail archive at:

  http://www2.satellite.eu.org/seesat/Jun-1998/0027.html

At that time there was (still is?) confusion about the 
numbering of Iridiums 24 and 46.  

In July, Jari reported an observation of a negative magnitude 
flash from Iridium 46 [SeeSat article "Iridium 46 Flash," (finn@main.jetnet.ab.ca) Sat, 4 Jul 1998 00:28:02 -0600 (MDT)].
That report's URL is:

  http://www2.satellite.eu.org/seesat/Jul-1998/0041.html

So, this is a follow-up/further confirmation of those.  Early
on 18 July 1998 UTC (Friday evening), Mike McCants and I saw
Iridium 46 (25105, 97-82B) tumbling.  (Mike saw it through his 
telescope, and I through the 12x80 finder.)  But no timings 
were obtained that evening.  I've tried unsuccessfully several 
times before that and a couple of times since to acquire it in 
binoculars, but its passes appear to be getting better, 
especially if you're north of latitude 30 north.

SPOT 3 (22823, 93-61A) is still a super-flasher.  In spite of
clouds Sunday evening, I was able to see several very bright 
flashes, at least one of which was a solid -3.  I got five 
times (date 20 July UTC):  4:05:28, 40, and 52 (the brightest),
and then 4:07:02 and 14 (which was the brighter of these two).
The location was 30.3457N, 97.8584W, about 200m.

Ed Cannon -- ecannon@mail.utexas.edu -- Austin, Texas, USA