Beidou 2A

From: Mike McCants (
Date: Mon Feb 26 2007 - 08:44:40 EST

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    In Jonathan's Space Report, No. 577, Jonathan writes:
    >China launched a navigation satellite towards geostationary orbit
    >on Feb 2. The CZ-3A rocket put the fourth Beidou payload in a
    >192 x 41772 km x 25.0 deg supersynchronous transfer orbit.
    >As of Feb 24, the Beidou satellite - reportedly the first of a new
    >generation - remained in this transfer orbit and had not moved to
    >geostationary, suggesting the possibility that it may have failed.
    >Feb  2 1628   Beidou 2A    Chang Zheng 3A  Xichang  Navigation  03A
    The NCat is 30323 - designation is 07 3A.
    Ed and I watched this payload last night for about 5 minutes as
    it descended from over 3000 miles to below 2300 miles and went
    into the Earth's shadow.  Initially it was magnitude 7 or 8 with
    slow fluctuations.  As it went farther east, it got gradually
    brighter until it reached naked eye visibility at magnitude 3
    for about 30 seconds before disappearing.  Shadow entry was about
    altitude 50, azimuth 115, range 2500 miles. (Feb. 26, 3:06 UT)
    Mike McCants   Austin, Tx   Lat 30.3, Long 97.8
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