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Intercosmos 24

Discussion in 'Observing Celestial Objects' started by Mak the Night, Dec 4, 2019 at 1:50 PM.

Intercosmos 24

Started by Mak the Night on Dec 4, 2019 at 1:50 PM

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  1. Mak the Night

    Mak the Night Well-Known Member

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    I was observing the Moon on the 1st of December with my 90mm Orion Mak and a 14mm Bresser 60º ‘Plossl’.

    [​IMG]

    This gave me 89x for 40 arc minutes, 27 seconds of TFOV. I am 186 metres above mean sea level.

    [​IMG]

    I’m not sure exactly when, but sometime between 17:00 and 17:15 GMT, an object passed at a diagonal angle directly in front of the Moon.

    [​IMG]

    It was in the lunar southern area travelling towards the south east. It couldn’t be the ISS as SkySafari had informed me the ISS would be rising an hour later.

    [​IMG]

    The object was angular and large. I was pretty sure it wasn’t an owl lol. I remember it moving near the Petavius area in a purposeful straight line as it passed in front of the Moon. Very much like an artificial satellite. The impression as it rapidly passed was of a box kite. There seemed to be some detail, or at least dark and light hues, which I suspected were solar panels.

    [​IMG]

    SkySafari 6 Pro and Starry Night Enthusiast 8 couldn't tell me what I'd seen. It took Stellarium (running on Ubuntu) to reveal the mystery.

    [​IMG]

    It turned out to be Intercosmos 24, a Soviet era research satellite launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in 1989.

    https://nssdc.gsfc.nasa.gov/nmc/spacecraft/display.action?id=1989-080A
     
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  2. Orion25

    Orion25 Well-Known Member

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    Oh, wow. There's so much orbiting up there these days. Watch out for falling debris! Glad you got in some good lunar observing. BTW, lovely shot of the Orion Mak ;)
     
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  3. Mak the Night

    Mak the Night Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Reggie (the little Mak is quite photogenic lol). It's been cold here, but I've had some decent nights. I saw the Winter Albireo the other night with my ST102.

    dXL7uMw.jpg

    I caught the First Quarter Moon with my old 102mm Mak. I only took a zoom eyepiece out with it.

    tnSQ3TR.jpg

    I've recently acquired a Baader-Zeiss Amici diagonal, so it's been interesting to give it a workout on the Mak's as they have no fine focusing. The T-2 helical on the diagonal can be locked. The prism is very high quality.

    Screenshot 2019-12-05 at 12.02.21.jpg

    I could see a lot of detail at around 16:00 (GMT) in twilight. As it got darker I noticed a lot of detail in the Baily area I've not really noticed before. Mind you, it took nearly an hour for the Mak to properly cool down. And this was before the frost came lol.

    b.jpg

    Venus is very bright at the moment. I also caught Mercury rising a few mornings ago with my 72mm Evostar. I could see the phase. It's a bit warmer now but Monday was so cold even the grass on the lawn froze. It was like an ice rink lol. Yesterday was beautiful and sunny all day. Now it's back to the usual English grey skies and occasional rain showers!
     
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2019 at 5:55 AM

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