sputnik image solved!

From: George Roberts (gr@gr5.org)
Date: Mon Oct 17 2011 - 05:11:31 UTC

  • Next message: Ted Molczan: "RE: sputnik image solved!"

    After 4 hours work I finally found where that sputnik image is within the 
    sky.  I owe most of the credit to astrometry.net.  Here is a link to the 
    part of the image I used for the solve:
    Here is a shot of google maps with and without the photo superimposed on the 
    star field.
    It was hard to get it to scale and rotate and fit just right.  Something is 
    distorted - probably the film or the reproduction process to get the image 
    onto the magazine.  The image turns out to be about 2 degrees the long axis 
    (not 4 degrees as predicted).  Also the image is not mirror image but as one 
    would see it looking at the sky.  North is down and to the left (you can see 
    a N on a compass circle in upper right corner of pictures).
    If you switch quickly between the above 2 images you can see that all the 
    stars line up.  The path is extremely close to where Ted predicted it.  Just 
    eyeing it I'd say the path is 0.05 degree to the right of Ted's prediction 
    (but maybe I'm in the wrong epoch).  Still I had a heck of a time matching 
    up this rich milky way region of the sky.
    As soon as the jiggling ends the path goes over a star at (according to 
    google earth):
    13h 42m 34.4s  dec -65 15' 15"
    I don't know how to tell if it is epoch 2000 or some other epoch.  Anyone 
    know how to use google earth?
    - George Roberts
    -----Original Message----- 
    From: Ted Molczan
    Subject: RE: Seeking information from Spaceflight, Vol 1, No. 6, Jan 1958
    SAO Special Report 10 (March 1958), reported an observation from Mt. Stromlo 
    on 1957 Oct 08 at 09:37:31 UTC, at RA
    13:36:54, DEC -64:53. Epoch not reported. That position is close in time and 
    track to several of my best preliminary
    solutions for the orbit of the rocket. The photo should be in the vicinity.
    This preliminary TLE of the rocket should be within ~0.1 of track, and 
    perhaps 5-10 s time:
    1 70000U          57285.40716306  .00497834  00000-0  19181-2 0    01
    2 70000  65.2501 317.6994 0482128  46.6160 317.4072 15.03056479    09
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