IAE re-entry time?

William Leininger (whl@mcs.com)
Thu, 23 May 1996 02:34:46 -0600

Ok, now I'm confused.

At about 5:20 am CDT (+/- a minute), on the morning of May 22, I was
standing on what my GPS receiver tells me is 34 degrees 9 minutes 7 seconds
north Latitude, 89 degrees 37 minutes 58 seconds west Longitude, trying to
use the extrapolated elements posted the day before by Alan Pickup to see
the IAE.

At about that time, I saw a fast moving bright object pass below Jupiter in
my sky.  It passed from west of south to east and disappeared into the dawn
sky.  The extrapolated elements had shown a pass above Jupiter at about
that time.  (Jupiter was at Azimuth 198 degrees 47 minutes, Altitude 31
degree 16 minutes at the time, according to Voyager II.)

(Sorry about the generalities; I consider myself a casual satellite
observer, and was caught without my shortwave receiver, which I normally
use as a timing standard.  Also, it was bright enough that Jupiter was
virtually the only thing visible in the sky, so no landmarks.)

I went to bed relatively certain that I'd seen IAE.  But when I checked my
mail later, I found that Bill Bard says NASA gives a re-entry time of 0530
EDT (0430 CDT), 50 minutes before my observation.

I ran a large batch of relatively fresh elements through OrbiTrack (by the
same Bill Bard) tonight, and the only other candidates I come up with are
77048 B, Cosmos 475 r, and Secor 5 r, none of which seem to me to fit this
observation exactly.

How certain is the re-entry time given today?  And what else might I have seen?

William H. Leininger                     | Ph: (847) 797-8871
Macintosh developer for hire             | 15 S. Maple Lane
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