Ed Cannon (
8 Sep 99 04:08:00 CDT

Rainer Kracht ( wrote, in response to my UNID

> UNK990907     e & n set
> 1 90907U          99250.08740308  .00000000  00000-0  00000+0 0    02
> 2 90907  49.3269 278.2608 7000000 307.4638   5.8093  2.00600000    04

Due to my ignorance, I'm not sure how close Rainer's elset is, but I am happy
to report very good fortune the following evening.  The weather was good.  I
was looking above (west of) a mag. +4 star (RA 21:20, Dec. +19.8, 2000) that
was below (east of) the "second position" from last night, and north of it I
saw two or three faint flashes, +7 at best.  I described the position to Mike
McCants as best I could ("It's by that star and near that 
other one, and kind of moving that way...."), and on that flimsy basis Mike
acquired it with his 8-inch telescope!  He and I then tracked it for 45
minutes or so, during which time it grew fainter and fainter until we could
not see it any longer.  

It's in a near-12-hour orbit; it was a few minutes earlier this time.  Mike
has the real data and said that he expects to post a search elset later today,
but I'll offer two crude "positions".  The method of getting these was setting
two alt-az locations in HomePlanet and then pointing at them to get
HomePlanet's RA & Dec readings!  So these two positions are definitely ROUGH! 
(I believe that HomePlanet uses 2000 coordinates.)

1999-09-08, 2:20 - RA 21:10, Dec +25.8
1999-09-08, 2:37 - RA 21:40, Dec +39.7

The observing location again was: 30.314N, 97.866W, 280m.

In the telescope it has a definite cycle of a very sharp specular flash
followed by a normal maximum (though this cycle seems to go through a longer
brighter-fainter cycle), but even near the end of the observation session it
was very faintly visible a fair amount of the time between the flash and the
tumble, at least during the brighter parts of the longer bright-faint

Ed Cannon - Austin, Texas, USA
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