Helios 1B flashing

From: Ted Molczan (seesat-list@rogers.com)
Date: Thu Jul 20 2006 - 05:29:26 EDT

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    This morning, 2006 Jul 20 at 08:55:41 UTC, I happened to spot 99064A /25977 as
    an unknown as it passed near Altair, 
    It was faint at minima, but its maxima were more like flares, to about mag zero.
    I estimate that its flash period was between 10 and 20 s.
    Helios 1B was manoeuvred from its operational sun-synchronous altitude to its
    present 600+ km graveyard orbit in the fall of 2004, after its on-board
    batteries failed.
    I was curious whether or not anyone else had reported it flashing, so I searched
    the web, and it turns out that I did, almost exactly one year ago - and the
    description still applies, so I saved myself a bit of typing:
    Ted Molczan
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