OTV 3 search elements

From: Ted Molczan via Seesat-l <seesat-l_at_satobs.org>
Date: Tue, 12 Aug 2014 17:37:59 -0400
A reliable observer, who prefers not to be identified, has reported OTV 3 running significantly ahead of the epoch
14223.82863608 TLE within the past few hours, which tends to confirm Brad Young's no-show report from last night. The
new orbit appears not to be as low as the speculative one I posted earlier.

I now speculate that the apogee was lowered to achieve a more circular orbit, probably at the first perigee following
Cees Bassa's observation of last night. That would have been on Aug 11 at about 21:38:52 UTC, within range of AFSCN New
Hampshire. The following elements were obtained by propagating the epoch 14223.82863608 TLE and then adjusting mean
motion and eccentricity to match the information received today:
                                                         319 X 332 km
1 70000U          14223.90199074  .00024143  00000-0  15546-3 0    09
2 70000  43.5037 153.2745 0010000  48.7346   7.8048 15.82320000    09

At the time of Brad's attempted observation, this TLE would have run about 1.5 min ahead of the epoch 14223.82863608
TLE, and about 1 deg off-track low. If Brad was using his large binoculars, it could easily have passed just outside his
FOV.

Although there is a reasonable basis for the above TLE, it is somewhat speculative; therefore, prospective observers are
advised to make generous allowance for time and track errors - at least 2 min. time and 3 deg track tonight.

Ted Molczan


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Received on Tue Aug 12 2014 - 16:38:54 UTC

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