ETS 7 lunar transit; Milstar 3 Centaur near miss

From: Ed Cannon (
Date: Tue Jan 18 2000 - 02:19:02 PST

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    Last night (early January 18 UTC) I was watching ETS 7 
    (25064, 97-74B -- not ETS 6) at one-power (about +3) 
    and noticed that it was going towards the Moon.  As it 
    kept going in the right direction and drawing closer, 
    I switched to binoculars and watched it disappear into 
    the glare just above the Moon and reappear just below 
    it.  As best as I could tell it almost perfectly 
    bisected the Moon, but all of that moonlight (and also 
    perhaps the effect of some very thin, high cloud) made 
    the artificial satellite invisible to me as it actually 
    made the transit.  
    Milstar 3 Centaur (25725, 99-23B) went very close to 
    the Moon, just south of it by maybe 1/8 degree or even 
    less.  I had been watching it also at one-power (maxima 
    in the +2.5 to +3.0 range), but it also, at its closest
    approach to the Moon, was overpowered by the moonlight, 
    even using my 10x50s.
    The observing location was close to 30.3068N, 97.7267W,
    150m (grounds of Elizabet Ney museum).
    Ed Cannon - - Austin, Texas, USA
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