how to resolve Mir?

Ryan Rudnicki (
Thu, 09 Jan 1997 07:09:34 -0600 (CST)


What is the minimum magnification required to resolve Mir?

Using the skytrack function of David Cappellucci's SatSpy program, I
noticed that on this morning's pass, Mir would pass very close to Polaris
from my latitude.  I set up a 70mm refractor with a 35mm eyepiece, 
yielding a magnification of 17x on Polaris and waited. When Mir came
into the field of view, I followed it. 

I thought I saw a slight elongation in the direction of movement, but I
wasn't sure if it was the shape of Mir or just astigmatism of my eye.
I have seen the images of Mir/shuttle on daytime passes captured at
high power in a large scope.  Any rules of thumb for minimums?

Ryan Rudnicki