Matson, Robert (
Wed, 12 May 1999 15:42:16 -0700

Hi Jonathan,

> > > Sunday evening (monday 02:31 UTC) I was outside and saw a 0 magnitude
> > > satellite moveing slowly north. It passed 5 - 10 degrees east of the
> > > zenith and then faded to  invisable.  It's path would have taken it
> > > thru the bowl of the big dipper. I think the inclination must have
> > > been nearly 90 deg.  Its speed reminded me of Pageos, so it must
> > > have been pretty high up.  Anyone have a guess on what satellite I
> saw?
> It may have been the International Space Station.

I assume you say so only because of the brightness; however, there was
sufficient information in the original post to rule out everything except
Iridium 59, one of the DMSP's, and possibly a piece of debris.  The
observation was checked against the orbital elements of over 8,000
resident space objects.  It could not have been ISS because the
object in question was in a near-polar orbit, and in an orbit considerably
higher than the space station.  --Rob