Re: Paleo-SeeSaters (or: Sputnik-1 elset req.)

Eberst (eberst@cableinet.co.uk)
Thu, 28 Aug 1997 18:07:30 +0100

>Hi!  This is my first posting, and I hope it's not off-topic:
>
>I'm trying to find the TLE's for the Sputnik 1 (or an approximation)
>during its first orbits.
>

Following data on Sputnik 1 taken from R.A.E. TABLE OF EARTH SATELLITES

   EPOCH     INCLINATION  NODAL  SEMI-MAJOR    PERIGEE  APOGEE  ECCENTRICITY
ARG. OF
   1957          DEGS.    PERIOD    AXIS       HEIGHT   HEIGHT
PERIGEE
                          mins      km            km       km
deg
   Oct  4.8      65.1     96.2    6955           215      939      0.052
58
   Oct 25.8      65.1     95.4    6916           213      863      0.047
49
   Dec 25.1      65.0     91.0    6702           190      458      0.020
23

No values of R.A. of ascending node are given.

It is unlikely that it would have been seen by the unaided eye. However it was
accompanied into orbit by its last stage rocket - quoted as being 28 metres
long,
which would have been very visible to the naked eye, and is therefore a likely
candidate for what the public remember as having seen.  Also a month later
(1957 Nov. 3), Sputnik 2 was launched, remained attached to its last stage
rocket,
total 31 metres in length, and was clearly visible to the eye - first hand
(or eye)
evidence, since I saw it on 1958 Jan 22 thru to its demise in April.

On another topic, I am not happy with the identity given for the newly announced
81-70M object.  This has been given the title "Delta 1 Deb" but I think this is
an error by someone who misinterpreted the title of 81-70A which is "DE 1 ".
However the "DE" is not short for Delta, but for Dynamics Explorer.
Therefore the correct title for 81-70M is "Dynamics Explorer 1 Deb".

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------
best wishes  Russell  Eberst  @   North: 55 degrees, 56 minutes, 55 seconds
             West:  3 degrees, 8 minutes, 18 seconds: 
             43metres (150 feet) above sea-level
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------