Re: Iridum format change and consolidated reports

Kurt Jonckheere (
Sat, 20 Sep 1997 09:37:35 +0200

Ron wrote :
>Ok is a possible new format for the Iridium reports along
>with most  of the reports to date in order.
thanks a lot Ron for gathering all info.

My very personal comments :
>1)   NORAD:  NORAD number.  I prefer this compared to the COSPAR because my
>tracking programs use that or the name....not COSPAR.   If the combined
mine uses COSPAR...., I (and most members of the BWGS I guess) have been
using COSPAR for whole our life (that is during the ten years since I started
with satellites).  For most of the flashers in our program I know the
COSPAR ID by head, only for MIR I remember NORAD is 16609.

>from a 5 space NORAD to 8 space COSPAR requires reducing 3 spaces. I
In practice we could use a 6 character COSPAR-like : 97-30A or even
the Iridium number e.g. 23 (2 characters).
To be honest, I think we shouldn't start with Iridiumnumbers, because
these are not present in orbital elements.

Seems we will need both to satisfy everybody.

>2)   Date:   May need to change to yymmdd format...with or without the "-"
As mentioned by Bram before, in our PPAS we use yy-mm-dd.  Together with
time hh:mm:ss the year->month->day->hour->minute->second sequence 
sounds the most logical way of ordering to me.

>6)   eI:    Elevation of max flare point..also called Altitude by some
According to a previous discussion on this list Altitude was the
'correct' one, although my prediction program isn't using it...

>13)  Mag:   Magnitude of max flare.  Personally I think to whole magnitude is
>good enough.  May have to if the extra digits are needed for other changes.
I agree.

>12)  Obs:   Observer initials.  Now two spaces to save space.
As I have a whole bunch of observing locations -  depending on how far
I want to drive from this light polluted city - I propose two spaces
for the initials plus a digit indicating the observing place :
KJ1 : observing place one 
KJ2 : ... two
with coordinates specified at the end of the list (see previous list)

This will only fit in a 80 characterline I guess...


Kurt J