Re: orbital debris report

Date: Tue Feb 04 2003 - 14:03:57 EST

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    Cosmos 149 and Cosmos 320 were designed and built as high-drag 
    objects. The standard "Cosmos" ellipsoidal body had an annular 
    structure attached to long rods that held it some distance from the 
    main body.
    The ring was mounted at right angles to the rods and provided drag. 
    This allowed it to be used as a stabilisation device, orienting the 
    satellite with the main body pointing forward along the orbital path. 
    This is similar to the way feathers stabilise an arrow.
    The low orbit used in order for the stabilisation to work, and the 
    relatively-large surface area of the ring, led to rapid decay of the 
    On 4 Feb 2003 at 8:34, wrote:
    > Ed,
    >  The
    > link is pretty much rubbish and has a number of errors in it; in particular
    > the reference which you mention, which as Igor points out refers to Kosmos-149 or Kosmos-320,
    > sounds like it is rehashing a vague memory of the author; TLEs show rapid decay within a few hours
    > of reaching 200 km, not 100 km.........._____________________________
    Robert Christy
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