Australian amateur spots NEAR at 33 gigameters

Allen Thomson (
Sun, 31 May 1998 08:23:07 -0700 (PDT)

 SYDNEY, May 31 (AFP) - An Australian amateur astronomer has set
a world record by detecting a manmade object nearly 100 times
further away from Earth than the moon, officials said Sunday.
   Gordon Garradd, from Loomberah in western New South Wales state,
photographed the Near Earth Asteroid Rendezvous (NEAR) spacecraft on
April 1 through an optical telescope at the request of American
space agency NASA.
   The Applied Physics Laboratory of the John Hopkins University in
the United States said he had successfully spotted the craft at 33.6
million kilometres (20.8 million miles).