QuikSCAT Launch

Brian Webb (102670.1206@compuserve.com)
Sun, 20 Jun 1999 20:14:16 -0400

According to the QuikSCAT Press Kit, the Titan II second stage will stay in
orbit about 18 months. It
gives the second stage dimensions as

        Length: 12 m (40 ft)
        Diameter: 3 m (10 ft)

The second stage skin is unpainted metal with a frosted finish. Given the
size and reflectivity of the second stage, it should be easy to see.

Regarding the QuikSCAT launch: I was at the press site at Vandenberg AFB.
There was a low cloud layer and heavy haze along the ground. The Titan II
was about 10 km away, but it was extremely hard to see. When it launched, I
really couldn't see anything, but the noise was nice. Down in Santa Barbara
the sky was clear, but all that was seen was a faint vapor trail as the
Titan passed through the stratosphere.


Brian Webb
Ventura County, California