Search elements

From: Ed Cannon (ecannon@mail.utexas.edu)
Date: Sat Nov 09 2002 - 02:21:02 EST

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    For the next month or more, the unknown object 90006 
    will be making good northbound passes over North America.  
    It is an interesting specular flasher with a flash 
    period of about 10.5 seconds with maxima up to about +6
    (except for those near its perigee in the far southern
    hemisphere).  The problem is, to my knowledge it hasn't 
    been observed in 286 days or more.  Not to worry!  Mike 
    McCants wrote a program called Int2 that calculates 
    estimated elements forward into time from the last 
    observation.  I'm not sure how much it can reduce the 
    error between predicted and actual positions, but it 
    can be a lot.  A couple of months ago using Int2 
    elements I was able to find a similar object, 90004 
    (formerly 90907), after it had not been seen for quite 
    a long time.  Object 90006, like 90004, can be seen on
    occasion with handheld 10x50 binoculars, but mounted 
    binoculars or low-power telescope (wide field of view)
    would be strongly recommended.  So, all of that being 
    said, for anyone who might like to search for 90006,
    here are some Int2-generated elements at 2-day intervals:
    
    90006
    1 90006U 00596A   02313.69405735  .00000354  00000-0  00000+0 0    07
    2 90006  62.7725   5.6945 7472997 280.7840    .0000  2.00620311    04
    90006
    1 90006U 00596A   02315.68786639  .00000359  00000-0  00000+0 0    08
    2 90006  62.7761   5.3580 7472660 280.8126    .0000  2.00621733    00
    90006
    1 90006U 00596A   02317.68166119  .00000362  00000-0  00000+0 0    09
    2 90006  62.7786   5.0307 7471778 280.8298    .0000  2.00623170    07
    90006
    1 90006U 00596A   02319.67544168  .00000365  00000-0  00000+0 0    07
    2 90006  62.7791   4.7093 7471282 280.8382    .0000  2.00624619    04
    
    I didn't get to see Superbird A tonight due to an
    astronomy club meeting.  I continue to wonder why 
    astronomers hold indoor club meetings on clear, 
    moonless evenings.
    
    Ed Cannon - ecannon@mail.utexas.edu - Austin, Texas, USA
    
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