Lacrosse 4: low-precision observation

From: John A. Dormer 2 (jad@texas.net)
Date: Tue Nov 21 2006 - 01:44:20 EST

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    This is not exactly the high precision I eventually hope to be able to
    render, but I easily spotted Lacrosse 4 at equal elevation to HD 151613
    (BD+57 1702, HR 6237, J164517.81+564654.6, PPM 35619) about 17 seconds
    late compared against Heavens Above data. It was observed at 01:55:12
    UTC with local (topocentric) elevation of 20 degrees, three minutes. It
    passed just to the right of the star, moving at roughly 340 degrees (I
    think I got this "DIR" angle correct, Mike & Björn).
    
    This is the first satellite I've spotted with a better piece of
    equipment: 150mm f/8 Newtonian with a 32mm Plössl eyepiece. I'm still
    working on better azimuth annunciation, as the mount I built is
    primarily to test the overhung-load Y-axis bearing design. With no
    improvements, I've found a keyhole of about 1/3 degree by 2 degrees
    directly overhead where I can't point. The field of view (1.346 degrees
    measured) covers some of the keyhole. This is mostly due to the azimuth
    bearing not existing in this version of the mount. Pictures of the mount
    at http://idoru.home.texas.net/mount/y-axis-test/DSC00956.JPG .
    
    I am slowly working on tools to generate a motion plan to point a
    telescope at the orbital plane of a vehicle, either in transit or due
    east and west of an observer. Now that I know I can point somewhat
    accurately, the application of the motion plan is more feasible.
    
    	John
    
    - --
    30d8m42.6sN 97d52m43.8sW or 30.145167 -97.878833 +220m WGS84 ellipsoid.
    
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