Identification of artificial satellites / junk?

Forums General Discussion Identification of artificial satellites / junk?

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    Tim Haymes

    I occasionally, and more often now, record satellites in fields of view. I videoed a slow blinking object of irregular magnitude moving at a geostationary rate in Aquila (Dec – 07) .  I have: date, time, RA, Dec, Long/lat, blink rate, min/max magnitude.

    Is there a means of identifying it?    Suggested software or on-line app would be nice. 

    Thanks for any tips

    Grant Privett

    TheSkyX can certainly do it… but I am sure there are less expensive options.

    Tim Haymes

    Thanks for the tip Grant.  I need to ask around to see who has a copy, and who might offer to solve it for me.

    I did download a command line program IDsat, but it assumes i know the ID. And the data input was hard going. So looking for a more user friendly solution.

    Cheers, Tim

    Grant Privett

    If you have time to a few seconds plus RA and Dec I can have a look for you.

    Tim Haymes

    Thank you Grant

    UT: 2019-07-26,  0007Hr 53s     RA 19h 44m 27s,  DEC -06d 53′ 54″ (J2000)
    rate of motion: 1’arc/min,   magnitude 10 to 13 erratic


    Not a geo but a UK Ministry of Defence Space Technology Research Vehicle.

    STRV 1D – launched 2000. Cube shaped, 100kg. 

    Slow moving:  RA 8 arcmin/min  Dec 2 arcmin/min.  

    TLE for July 19

    0 STRV 1D
    1 26611U 00072D   19199.70430212 -.00000234  00000-0 -21168-2 0  9994
    2 26611   6.2386 128.2536 7356330 328.1965 309.8099  2.03355429138712

    Great Wading Demon

    Peter Birtwhistle

    Hi Tim,

    If you can get two or more positions for a suspected artsat you can use the online SatID page to try and make an identification:

    More than one position is required to get a rate and direction of of motion for matching to known objects. SatID requires positions in MPC format which isn’t too difficult to manually format. Your time/RA/Dec translates to this (using my observatory code J95 which is close enough to your site):

         ARTSAT   C2019 07 26.00547519 44 27.00 -06 53 54.0                      J95

    Try as a test these two observations from ATLAS which should identify as art sat 1999-040D:

         A10f7FB* C2019 07 27.39210618 38 00.78 -19 14 18.6          14.59oVNEOCPT08

         A10f7FB  C2019 07 27.39767518 38 37.34 -19 25 31.0          15.25oVNEOCPT08

    The output from SatID was:

    2 observations found 2 observations left after dropping extras A10f7FB* C2019 07 27.39210618 38 00.78 -19 14 18.6 14.59oVNEOCPT08 25869U = 1999-040D e=0.82; P=1481.0 min; i=36.3: IUS R/B(2) motion 1.76″/sec at PA 142.3; dist= 73013.8 km; offset= 0.00 deg 0.1 seconds elapsed

    (Just in case the formatting of the MPC lines gets messed up, I’ve attached those examples in a word doc)


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