Tracks through M42

Matson, Robert (
Tue, 21 Sep 1999 18:08:24 -0700

Hi All,

Without knowing the time that the photo was taken, it'll be
very difficult to ID the satellites that were observed.  This
is because so many GEOs passed through this small region,
among them Telstars 401, 5 and 6; Galaxy 6, 7 and 8; DBS 1,
2 and 3; Spacenet 4, Brasilsat 2, JCSat 1, GOES-J, ACTS,
GE-1 and 1995-069A (whatever it is) -- and those just in
the space of one hour from 7:40pm to 8:40pm EST!

For those who don't have the coordinates, Kelly, NC is at:

34.46611 N, -78.32472 W, alt ~10 m.

(Of course, with the present flooding, the altitude may be
closer to -1 meter!)

It may be that the best way to determine the time of the
photo is to determine the identities of the two N-S
satellites.  These are obviously not GEOs.  However, I
find no real good candidates.  NOAA 4 r Deb BT has the
closest track to the Trapezium -- at around 20:13 EST
(1:13 UT on the 3/8).  The track of Cosmos 2315 R/B was
about 2/10 degree further west at ~23:52 UTC, but since
these times are more than 40 minutes apart, both could
not have been in the picture.  --Rob