Re: 2000 SG344: Asteroid or Saturn rocket?

From: Harro.Zimmer (
Date: Tue Nov 14 2000 - 05:52:37 PST

  • Next message: BEHREND Raoul: "Re: 2000 SG344: Asteroid or Saturn rocket?"

    Two remarks for the further discussion under the assumption that the object is
    a S IV-B rocket stage:
       1. The reflectivity or albedo of the surface has changed during about 30
          years in solar orbit because of "sputtering" caused primarily by the
          solar wind. The surface is now darker.
       2.The discrimination between a S IV-B and an asteroid may be possible if we   
         look for a short period magnitude change of the object. What is the final   
         rotational state of a rocket stage after three decades? Tumbling about all  
         three axis ? 
    As an "old" astronomer and space scientist I believe we can (at least theoreti- 
    cally) solve the puzzle with very precise photometric observations.
    Berlin, Germany
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