Series of bright short USA 161 flashes

From: Marco Langbroek (marco.langbroek@wanadoo.nl)
Date: Mon Jun 19 2006 - 20:08:23 EDT

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    Just an hour ago I observed Keyhole USA 161 (2001-044A, #26934) giving a series 
    of bright short mag. -2 flashes. Each flash was no more than about a second in 
    duration.
    
    I caught 2 of these flashes with my camera. The best image (crop, reduced in 
    resolution) can be seen here:
    
    http://i19.photobucket.com/albums/b176/marcoaliaslama/satellites/161_1906.jpg
    
    (arrow indicates short flash, also end of the trail in this case, which almost 
    looks lik a bright star: faint trail can be seen preceding the flash to the 
    upper right of it).
    
    These USA 161 flashes were quite like the short flashes of USA 186 and unlike 
    the longer flares of USA 129 and USA 116 I have seen.
    
    I counted at least 3 such very short flashes in about 2 minutes time, but can 
    give approximate times of only two of them:
    
    flash 1: 23:22:06 UTC +/- 1 s
    flash 2: 23:22:??
    flash 3: 23:23:35 UTC +/- 2s
    
    I now have images with flares of all 4 Keyholes in orbit at this moment :-)
    
    Positions for USA 161 will follow tomorrow, along with Lacrosse 4 positions and 
    perhaps more if I am lucky later this night with USA 116.
    
    - Marco  :-)
    
    -----
    Dr Marco Langbroek  -  SatTrackCam Leiden, Cospar 4353
    Leiden, the Netherlands. 52.15412 N,  4.49081 E (WGS84), +0 m ASL
    
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