Re: Object 18911

From: Jonathan McDowell (
Date: Sun Dec 25 2005 - 09:37:24 EST

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    Hi Leo
    > Thanks for the alert.
    > I noticed there is a gap in the TLE's for 18911 between 1962 day 109
    > and 1967 day 202. Object lost in 1962 and number re-assigned in 1967?
    18911 was only cataloged in 1988.
    I imagine the observations of this object were sitting unloved in the
    pile of uncorrelated targets as two sets of data, one correlated to the
    1967-14 launch, and some analyst connected the two but didn't realize
    that the 1961-62 data ruled out the correlation with 1967-14.
    > 1967-14 E, 02683, has just 3 TLE's, all from 1981 day 232 to 236.
    (and none of the three TLEs have anything to do with 02683)
    > Objects 26076 and 26078 were first assigned to 2000-06 F and H,
    > Cosmos 2369 Zenit-2 debris. They have tle's from 2000 day 37
    > till 2000 day 92 respectively day 37 till day 39.
    > Then in 2005 they are re-assigned to 1999-40 E and F,  Chandra
    > IUS debris.
    I'd missed this! Looks like they are associated with the IUS SRM-1 stage.
    I wonder what they are - maybe bits of solid motor slag or something.
    Just as long as nothing is falling off our spacecraft...
    > Several objects have TLE's from before their actual launchtime.
    > Sometimes just shortly before, but sometimes days.
    I've seen these. They are almost certainly 'search elements' issued
    prelaunch to help radars know where to look. I suggest you will most often
    find these for US objects. I understand that they are not meant to enter
    the catalog but sometimes there's a goof.
      - Jonathan
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