Friday, December 04, 2009

The STSS demo rocket

On November 30, Russel Eberst recovered the "lost" rocket stage 2009-052C from the STSS Demo launch. This allowed Ted to observe it from a preliminary elset in the early hours of Dec 1st, followed by me later that day, and a number of other observers in the days after.

During my observation, thin veil clouds were scattered in the sky, and a bright near-full moon was glowing in the sky. This lead to considerably fogged images. Nevertheless the object showed up on 3 images. It was faint near the zenith and definitely brighter while descending in the east. Below image shows it crossing Andromeda.

click image to enlarge

The object should decay somewhere in April/May 2010 (see here). This means we have another nice fastly evolving orbit to keep track on this winter and spring.

This same evening I tried to capture Lacrosse 2 (91-017A) but failed, due to the object having manoeuvred and hence being late.

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