RE: Question about visibility of Falcon 9 and Dragon

From: Ted Molczan (ssl3molcz@rogers.com)
Date: Sat Jun 05 2010 - 06:38:00 UTC

  • Next message: Ted Molczan: "RE: Question about visibility of Falcon 9 and Dragon"

    Paul Floyd asked:
    
    > Is anyone able to let me know if Falcon 9 would have been visible from
    > Eastern Australia this morning.
    
    The Falcon 9 test payload, which is attached to the rocket's 2nd stage
    (10026A / 36595), appears to account for the phenomenon. It exited eclipse
    (umbra) on Jun 05 at 05:48:06 AM local standard time (Jun 04, 19:48:06 UTC)
    at azimuth 229 deg, elevation 16 deg; culminated at about 05:49:42, at az
    161, el 42; and passed below 10 deg elevation at 05:51:57, at azimuth 86
    deg. Angular velocity at culmination was 1.2 deg/s.
    
    This is consistent with the approximate time, direction of travel (SW - NE,
    W - E), and the apparent high speed, reported here:
    
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/06/05/2919095.htm?section=justin
    
    This occurred about 65 min after launch, so perhaps the 2nd stage was
    dumping excess propellant. Similar actions by Centaur stages have always
    resulted in spectacular cloud-like formations.
    
    Ted Molczan
    
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