Re: CoSaTrak Observations

From: Greg Roberts (grr@iafrica.com)
Date: Thu Nov 02 2000 - 00:51:00 PST

  • Next message: Greg Roberts: "CoSaTrak Observations"

    Hi All
    
    I dont know how many would be interested in my posting observations made
    with my computerised satellite tracking system ( for further details see
    http://canopus.saao.ac.za/~wpk/CoSaTrak/cosatrak.html) but some of the
    information might be of interest to some people. The system is still under
    development so no serious work has been done yet. The system consists of 2
    low light level surveillance cameras ( 0.05 and 0.01 lux) and used in
    conjunction with various telephoto lenses - currently a 25mm focal length
    f/1.4 lens ( reaching down to about magnitude +7.2 ) and a 135mm f/3.5 lens
    that can record satellites as faint as about magnitude +8.5. The system is
    computer controlled and the observer ( ie me ) sits in front of several
    monitor screens and can switch cameras and record the data on video tape
    along with audible time signals. The system has great potential for
    photometric satellite work as well as positional work. In some cases the
    satellite may be too faint to be visually seen when it enters the field of
    view in which case one jumps to the next  predicted position and starts the
    AUTOTRACK mode in which case the system tracks on the predictions and one is
    then usually able to see the fainter satellites that may be flashing or
    varying slowly. One is able to track the satellite for as long as the
    satellite is above a prescribed elevation - I usually set the lower limit at
    25 degrees because of surrounding trees/houses etc, so tracks are sometimes
    several minutes long ( depending on how pressed I am for time for the next
    satellite). Consequently one is able to detect flares and other exciting
    things the satellite may do - it also vividly demonstrates the effect of
    phase angle on appearance/brightness.
    If there is no response to this posting - other than complaining about the
    length of the posting - I will assume there is no interest in the listing
    :-)
    
    I will post the item as a seperate item
    Best wishes
    
    Greg Roberts
    
    Long  18.512944 east   Lat  33.940583 South  (GPS) elevation 10 metres
    
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