Re: Columbia plus one more obj

Robert G Fenske Jr (
Thu, 5 Dec 1996 08:30:19 -0600 (CST)

On Thu, 5 Dec 1996 wrote:

> I observed Columbia and one other object in parallel orbit this morning. I 
> understand that the ORFEUS-SPAS payload has already been retrieved and 
> Columbia is scheduled to land one orbit later than my observation.
> So, what was the other object? I took a time exposure photo in case it 
> turns out to be of a more curious nature.

> Other object, peak elevation 15 deg, parallel plane trailing Columbia ~2 
> seconds, magnitude ~5.

	What you saw was probably GRO, the Compton Gamma Ray Observatory.
I also saw both the Shuttle and GRO this morning.  Both made about a 70
deg max elev pass.  I was hoping to see Columbia's re-entry plasma trail;
instead it was just a normal pass.  While driving to work later I heard on
the radio that the landing has been postponed until tomorrow.  I also 
tried to see Lacrosse 1 again as it was passing by at the same time as
well but low elevation + clouds stopped me.

Robert Fenske, Jr.   Sw     | The Taming the C*sm*s series:
Southwest Research Institute           /R---\  |
Signal Exploitation and Geolocation   | I    | | "The Martian canals were the
San Antonio, Texas USA                 \----/  |  Martians' last ditch effort."