Saturday, November 27, 2010

Go Bucks!!! and 12 sats

Watched the OSU vs Michigan game today. A 37-7 win for the Buckeyes!!! Wasn't too sure how things were gonna pan out after that 1st quarter, but once they found their rhythm, it was all over. Great job by both the D and the O. It also helps when the team you're playing literally is tied for the worst field goal percentage and therefore ALWAYS went for it on fourth and whatever when they were in the red zone.

While the kids were getting a bath, I took a peak outside and notice it was crystal. After the baths were done, I asked the Mrs if I could go outside for a bit and she was kind enough to say yes even though I know that after a day of shopping she was probably pretty tired. This evening's session was totally ad-libbed. I just went out with a blank piece of paper and my wool hat and just scanned the sky. I pretty much would look to the E and scan that entire area. Then look to the N, then the W then the S. Repeat. I generally would spend longer in the E because I know the sky over there and I can pick them out fairly easily. Plus, most of the sats are over there anyways due to the position of the sun and all that scientific crap. In all, I ended up seeing 12 objects. Not too bad for a 45 minute session. And there were many objects being sighted by me for the first as well. That makes it even that much more exciting.

Here's the time-line for evening of:
Date: 27-Nov-2010 Saturday

6:22 PM - Zi Yuan-2B or JB-3 - 3.0 Magnitude
Int'l Designator: 2002-049-A
This is my fifth sighting JB-3, a Chinese earth imaging satellite that is rumored to be one of the first high-resolution military imaging satellites.

6:26 PM - Cosmos 2084 Rocket - 4.2 Magnitude
Int'l Designator: 1990-055-D
This is my first sighting of this Molniya-M rocket body. It was used to launch Kosmos 2084, a Russian satellite that is part of the Oko missile launch defense system. Unfortunately, according to NASA the launch of this rocket actually failed to put the satellite in the correct orbit and no communication ever occurred with the satellite itself (though no other sites mention this failure). This system was also known as the US-KS. I got side-tracked... I should be talking about the rocket. Molniya means "lightning" and the Molniya-M is derived from the R-7 ICBM. The final flight for this type of rocket was on Sept 30 2010.

6:29 PM - NOSS 6 (D) - 5.9 Magnitude
Int'l Designator: 1984-012-D
This is my first sighting of this NOSS 6 (or possibly NOSS 7) satellite, also known as JD2. Regardless, this is one of the NOSS satellites. This system, also known as PARCAE had three satellites for the system and also a MSD (multiple satellite dispenser). I believe that this object is one of the satellites. The satellites were launched from an Atlas H rocket. There seems to be some confusion on if this is NOSS 6 or NOSS 7. The NASA page, the satellite page I use and one other page in Wiki lists this as NOSS 6. However another trusted satellite site and a different Wiki page lists it as NOSS 7. *shrug* That's the government for ya. It was 1984 and they were probably launching recon satellites every other week. It's easy to get confused at that point. :P

6:30 PM - Cosmos 1346 - 4.2 Magnitude
Int'l Designator: 1982-027-A
This is my first sighting of Cosmos 1346. This object is a Russian Tselina-D ELINT satellite. It was launched into orbit using a Vostok-2M rocket in 1982.

6:34 PM - Cosmo-SkyMed 3 - 3.5 Magnitude
Int'l Designator: 2008-054-A
This is my fourth sighting of SkyMed 3, an Italian earth observation satellite.

6:42 PM - XM 5 Tnk - 4.6 Magnitude
Int'l Designator: 2010-053-C
This is my first sighting of this object. This is the Briz-M upper stage of a Proton-M rocket. This rocket was used to launch the XM-5 satellite for the XM Satellite Radio. According to the specs, this satellite is the bee's knees.

6:46 PM - Cosmos 1005 Rocket - 3.0 Magnitude
Int'l Designator: 1978-045-B
This is my first sighting of this Vostok-2M rocket. This rocket launched Cosmos 1005, a Russian Tselina-D ELINT satellite into orbit in 1978.

6:52 PM - Meteor 1-19 Rocket - 4.1 Magnitude
Int'l Designator: 1974-083-B
This is my first sighting of this Vostok-2M rocket. It launched Meteor 1-19, the 19th Meteor 1 Russian weather satellite into orbit in 1974.

6:52 PM - Cosmo-SkyMed 2 - 3.4 Magnitude
Int'l Designator: 2007-059-A
This is my fifth sighting of SkyMed 2, an Italian earth observation satellite.

6:53 PM - Resurs 1-4 Rocket - 2.4 Magnitude
Int'l Designator: 1998-043-G
This is my twenty-second sighting of this Ol' Faithful Zenit-2 rocket body.

6:56 PM - Cosmos 2227 Rocket - 2.7 Magnitude
Int'l Designator: 1992-093-B
This is my second sighting of this Zenit-2 rocket body used to launch Cosmos 2227, a Russian Tselina-2 (not Tselina-D) ELINT satellite, in 1992.

7:02 PM - Iridium 69 tum - 5.6 Magnitude
Int'l Designator: 1998-026-A
This is my first sighting of this tumbling Iridium satellite, Iridium 69. This Iridium satellite was launched using a Long March 2C-III SD rocket. The SD model is designed to be able to launch 2 satellites (this particular rocket launched Iridium 69 (the object sighted this evening) and Iridium 71.

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