re: Satellite magnitudes a volont'e

From: Walter Nissen <dk058_at_cleveland.Freenet.Edu>
Date: Tue, 2 May 1995 09:06:51 -0400

> From: (Neil T. Clifford)
> Subject: Re: Satellite magnitudes a volont'e
> To: (Seesat Listserv)
> > Regarding your question, I know that Mike McCants' prediction program Quicksat
> > contains a large file with satellite magnitudes. A uuencoded and zipped
> > Satellite magnitudes can also be found in a file made available by Walter
> > Nissen.
> ...and the magnitudes given in the Molczan tle's? Magnitude when 50
> percent lit at a distance of 1000km I think (or am I wrong :-) ?
I think the mags given in Ted Molczan's file are derived from the presumed
size. Another source of sizes is the RCS (radar cross section) in the SSR
(Satellite Situation Report). Widespread distribution of this latter is
relatively recent. I don't know which is most useful. Any opinions?
I think Mike's catalog is the most useful source of brightness data, and
personally, my list second (tho it is not nearly as complete as the other
sources). Both of these are based on actual observations. The others are
primarily useful, I think, when Mike's catalog has no entry.
(None of these address very adequately the variation of tumblers and
flashers, at least in the sense that, when you look in the Astronomical
Almanac for a magnitude of, say, a planet or a planetary satellite, you
get a very solid impression of how bright it will actually be when you
look in the ocular or when you make a .1s exposure.)
Wait till Jay Respler chimes in.

Received on Tue May 02 1995 - 10:55:45 UTC

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