Friday, 10 February 2012

The Iranian satellite Navid photographed

On February 3, 2012, Iran succesfully launched its third satellite into orbit, Navid (2012-005A), using a Safir rocket.

This evening was clear and I had a 86 degree pass of this new Iranian satellite. It is very small (a 50 kg semi-kube, only 50 x 60 cm large!) and hence faint. Using the 1.4/85mm SamYang lens, I nevertheless managed to photograph it, catching it as a faint trail just south of the alpha Persei star group on a 5 second exposure:

click image to enlarge

This is probably the smallest object in orbit I have ever photographed.

Navid is reportedly an imaging satellite, taking photographs from a 250 x 375 km orbit. At the time the photograph above was taken, it was at 316 km altitude.


onepodium said...

Good catch!

Kailar said...

Very faint alright. Good catch!