NOSS 2-3, 67% one-power

From: Ed Cannon (ecannon@mail.utexas.edu)
Date: Sun Jul 29 2001 - 15:20:32 PDT

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    In the last several nights, NOSS 2-3 (23908, 23862, 23936; 
    96-029C,D,E) have been peculiar in that on every pass, even
    on both passes in one evening, the trailer and outlier have 
    been at least a couple of magnitudes brighter than the 
    leader.  Last night even with the moonlight, I was able 
    without magnification to see the trailer and outlier over 
    much of their pass, so they must have been about +3.5 at 
    least.  But the leader required binoculars and even then was 
    fairly faint.
    
    These are southbound evening passes, which seem to me to be
    the most likely passes during which to look for one-power
    brightness from NOSS 2-1, 2-2, and 2-3.  (It may be that 
    northbound morning passes are similar, but I don't do much 
    morning observing.)
    
    Last night's NOSS 2-3 interrupted my Intelsat 512 obs, so 
    that I missed a few of the flashes of the second half of 
    the episode.  I saw it between about 3:57:49 and 4:09:35 
    (July 29) UTC.  Using my last-flash times, I'm seeing it 
    about 12.5 minutes later each night.
    
    For the next two or three nights, central and western USA 
    observers who like flashing geosynchs might try to see both 
    Gorizont 16 and Raduga 21 in one field of view.  Especially 
    Monday evening (from Austin at least) they will be close 
    together in the sky.  Gorizont 16 is now about every 95.75 
    seconds, and Raduga 21 has varying-length segments from 33 
    to 88 seconds totalling about 238.6 seconds, possibly 
    divisible into two half-periods.
    
    Ed Cannon - ecannon@mail.utexas.edu - Austin, Texas, USA
    
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