TiPS observations

Mike McCants (
Fri, 19 Jul 1996 11:25:50 -0500

I observed TiPS on two passes last night.

The first pass had culmination at 2:48UT July 19.
It was 30 degrees altitude at azimuth 50.
The apparent angle at culmination was 20 degrees with the
upper mass LEADING the lower mass.

The second pass had shadow entry about 4:38UT July 19.
It was about 43 degrees altitude at azimuth 260.
This was close to culmination.  The apparent angle was 20 degrees
with the upper mass TRAILING the lower mass.

I conclude from this that the angle changed by 40 degrees over
that 1:50 time.

I used a tape recorder, but it is not clear whether there is
more information recorded.  I will have another near zenith
pass this evening, so maybe a tape recorder as I watch the
pass from low in the north to the south will allow me to
record apparent length and position angle at different times.

Rob McNaught (private communication) has pointed out that
there is no reason to assume that the oscillations around the
vertical are confined to the orbit plane.  So it is possible
that I could get a "direct point" of the tether near my zenith
even though it will be 16 degrees away from my zenith.

This would also seem to be a situation in which two or more
observers at different sites could watch the tether on a single
pass and compare observations to determine the true 3-dimensional
vector of the tether.

Mike McCants