Obs 2004 Jun 13/14

From: Kent Yeglin (ky@yeglin.com)
Date: Mon Jun 14 2004 - 04:12:58 EDT

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    These are my first positional reports to the list. My obs of Jun 7 missed the list due to E-mail client operator error (oops). Thanks to Ted Molczan and Pierre Neirinck for forwarding back to me the residuals on my points. I am a radio broadcast engineer here in the San Francisco Bay Area. Despite light pollution and the seemingly ever-present nighttime summer coastal fog (which takes the form of a 300-600 meter-high stratus deck), I have been observing satellites for four years, keeping a rather informal list of objects seen. I've come to enjoy the challenge of making more precise measurements and hope that I might contribute some useful data as a result of this effort.
    I'm not entirely satisfied with the resolution I was able to achieve in the 24680 obs below... just too much light pollution to get good points using fainter (mag. 7) stars, so I had to settle for more widely-spaced brighter ones.
    I was reluctant to post the 90019 obs of Sunday a.m., as I "lost" the reference stars during my immediate post-observation review of the pass for memory-refreshing purposes -- pretty rusty in the Capricorn/Aquarius part of the sky. ObsReduce had my reference stars centered in the FOV at the proper times and, using the miss distances estimated "at the eyepiece," gave sufficiently low X-track and time differences (consistent with my accuracy level) that the reference stars are almost certainly correct.
    I estimate the positional accuracies to be less (worse) than shown below. I don't have a good feel for the proper values, so I stuck with the ObsReduce defaults for now. Observations were with 7x50, stopwatch calibrated to WWV (before and after) and reduced using ObsReduce 1.2.1.
    90019 03 790B   8737 F 20040613111916880 37 25 1935294-103121 28 S
    90019 03 790B   8737 F 20040613111947550 37 25 1959797-095932 37 S
    90019 03 790B   8737 F 20040613112054120 37 25 2052639-085601 57 S
    24680 96 072A   8737 F 20040614050355200 37 25 1622602+010519 78 S
    24680 96 072A   8737 F 20040614050529410 37 25 1627462+373430 58 S
    24680 96 072A   8737 F 20040614050539520 37 25 1628557+415296 17 S
    24680 96 072A   8737 F 20040614050635730 37 25 1641808+643747 58 S
    What these numbers mean: http://www.satobs.org/position/IODformat.html
    Had a very fast moving as-yet-unid (about mag. 3.5) cross the FOV during the 90019 pass at 11:22:56 UTC on an approximate 110-degree azimuth heading. Perhaps an object in an eccentric, mid-inclination orbit near perigee?
    Site 8737: 37.83000 N, 122.26194 W, 40 m
    Kent Yeglin
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