Re: BS-3A (Yuri 3A) & Raduga 33 & 98001 & GFO &c.

Ed Cannon (
Mon, 01 Mar 1999 03:26:27 -0600

Regarding BS/Yuri 3A (20771, 90-77A), the last two nights 
Mike McCants and I also observed the bright-bright-faint 
flash pattern that Rob Matson reported.  Mike discovered a 
very small but repeated asymmetry in the timings, and I 
got it also, although I barely had enough times to see it:  

  Bright   Bright    Faint
  ------   ------    -----
            87.76    88.32
   87.42    87.67    88.22
   87.67    87.67  
  175.78    87.77    88.23
   87.55    87.82

Occasionally, observing with telescope, there was a secondary 
flash about a second after one of the bright ones.  Some of 
the bright flashes were one-power even with all the moonlight.  
Mike wondered if there might be reports by astronomers of an 
unknown flashing object going through/very near the Orion 
nebula, because it did go there both nights.

I'm glad that some other folks are seeing Raduga 33 (23794,
96-10A).  There weren't many follow-ups when I mentioned it 
last year.  Mike and I saw a few one-power flashes Saturday 
night.  My recollection is that some of them last summer 
were as bright as or perhaps a lot brighter than +2.

"Thank you very much!!" to Rob Matson for looking for and 
recovering "98001"!  Saturday night we apparently looked to 
late, but Sunday night Mike found it and we both watched it
a while.  Some of its flashes were visible in Mike's 12x80
finder, in spite of the moonlight.

Saturday night (early Sunday UTC) Mike and I observed a +1 
flare from GFO (25157, 98-7A).  The pass was very high in the 
west, and the flare was north of its culmination.  OIG gives 
GFO's radar cross-section as 1.5!

All of these observations were from Bee Cave Research Center,
Austin, Texas, USA - 30.314N, 97.866W, 280m.

Has anyone in the southern hemisphere seen anything like the 
super flashes exhibited last summer by SPOT 3 (22823, 93-61A)?  
For a few weeks, on almost every pass it displayed one-power 
flashes, and some of them were extremely bright negative 
magnitudes -- truly awesome.

NOAA 7 (12553, 81-59A) does some good flashes also, and it 
may be having visible passes in the southern hemisphere now.

Ed Cannon - - Austin, Texas, USA