From: Greg Roberts (
Date: Sun May 20 2001 - 01:42:00 PDT

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    Hi All
    In a message to SeeSat recently Jonathan T Wojack asked
    >BTW, what is "WSRN"?
    that was mentioned in a message from Tony Beresford. I havent
    seen a reply from Tony on the subject of WSRN so will "jump in"
    with foot in mouth !
    WSRN stood for Western Satellite Research Network that operated
    in the mid 1960's to early 70's and was comprised of about 50
    amateur groups or individuals spread around the world but with by 
    far the majority in the United States. It was funded by North
    American Rockwell Corporation. The main purpose of the group was
    to secure optical observations of artificial satellites and to 
    locate lost satellites. Several publications were issued on the 
    optical characteristics of many satellites. I here quote from the 
    introduction to the report SD68-629 "Satellite Optical Characteristics
    Catalog (1965-1968) of July 20, 1968: "For the past ten years
    teams of the Western Satellite Research Network have undertaken
    an extensive program aimed at compiling and classifying satellite
    optical characteristics. In this the second optical charactersitics
    catalog 7900 observations of the optical characteristics of 574
    satellites are compiled,reduced and presented in tabular form etc etc
    ..... "
    Most of the former WSRN observers have now passed onto higher
    pastures or disappeared from the tracking scene - I wonder how many
    members of SeeSat were part of WSRN?. I have a short list of the
    most active observers - taken from the introduction to the above
    publication - which gives
     " The contributions of the following individuals are particularly 
    Michael McCants, Greg Roberts, Paul Maley, Dr.U.Guntzel-Linger,
    George Gruskos, Richard Reynolds, David Brierley, Horst Kohnke,
    Alan Stephenson and his team, Jim Williams and Donald Charles."
    Some of these names are still around today - Horst Kohnke,who
    was a very keen observer, infortunately passed away several years
    ago at a relatively young age.
    Im not too sure of exactly when WSRN ceased to operate - it was
    either in the very late 60's or very early 70's - guess they lost
    their funding. 
    I hope this is of interest to readers. 
    Best wishes,
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