Re: re-entry?

From: Tony Beresford (
Date: Mon Aug 02 2004 - 00:24:43 EDT

  • Next message: Ted Molczan: "RE: re-entry?"

    At 13:16 2/08/04, oliver wrote:
    >Observed  from 43 0' N  78 11' W (Batavia NY) 8/1/04 between 20.20 hrs
    >and 20.30 hrs
    >at an altitude of approximately 80 degrees due South moving from West to
    >East. I am not a skilled observer so please excuse my clumsy attempts to
    >report this as clearly as you would like. I was standing outside a
    >relative's house with several family members observing what a beautiful
    >clear evening it was. Aircraft at high cruising altitude could be
    >clearly observed. A few weeks prior I had observed a satellite from the
    >same location. I asked for binoculars and focused on the object which
    >appeared to be travelling around orbital speed. I handed the binoculars
    >to my wife and continued to observe with the naked eye.
    >She let out an exclamation and said it was breaking up into first two,
    >then four, then multiple pieces over a ten to fifteen second period. At
    >that point I could no longer see the object with the naked eye.
    >How rare is it to observe an object re-entering the atmosphere through
    >Since my wife rarely looks through binoculars and more rarely looks
    >skyward she was really impressed.
    >Can anyone tell us what this object might have been? H2A DEB perhaps?
    Orbit Information Group (OIG) at goddard SFC shows no re-entries due 
    at this time Oliver. I certainly wasnt the H2DEB object due in soon,
    thats in a polar orbit, which doesnt pass over your longitude
    till around midnight EDT. It was still in orbit 8 hours before your
    observation, and of course would have been moving N -> S.
    I think you saw a slow moving meteor.
    Tony Beresford
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