Re: satellite tracking

From: Wayne Hughes (
Date: Sat Jun 25 2005 - 05:37:13 PDT

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    I agree that manual tracking at least is quite easy.  I have no problem
    intercepting 90% of objects with a 12.5" dob and then tracking even
    objects moving as fast as Lacrosse satellites although I admit there is
    considerable athleticism involved  :-) .  What a kick it is too!  I had
    a little trouble with the tethered satellite TiPS at zenith, but no
    problem at all when it was closer to the horizon, and quite a sight it
    I use SatSpy fueled with Mike McCants' latest mccants.tle, eccen.tle, or
    geo.tle  to find interesting passages.  I then use Chris Marriott's
    SkyMap Pro 6 to find a more precise time and location that is easily
    found in the sky.  I usually try to select a star I can find that is no
    more than a degree or two from the passage point.  I usually get there a
    minute or so ahead.  The FOV with a 32 mm TeleVue lens is about a
    degree.  With the 12.5" I've had no problems tracking satellites with
    magnitudes down to 12 or 13.  The Noss satellites usually don't fit into
    the 1 degree FOV  all at once  :-( .
    By the way, this is an excellent way to learn the stars.
    Wayne Hughes
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