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Re: AO-40: Plans for April-June 2001

Dr. Jim Akres wrote:

> Won't it be interesting to see what happens here?

Uh, yeah...I can be patient to see a final outcome as long as the clock isn't
going to run out on us. 

Would somebody knowlegable about the current orbital dynamics make a short
comment as to whether Peter's reference to "perigee height is decreasing
steadily due to luni-solar perturbations" is a hint that things are
deteriorating or simply a recognition that the perigee is going to be a bit
lower for a while, and then is going to improve again? That's what I meant by
"long-period variation vs. secular trend".

The last authoritative word I heard on this subject was that the orbit was
forecast to be stable throughout the projected lifetime of the bird. Is that
still true? Or are we in danger of losing the spacecraft prematurely if we don't
eventually get more energy into the orbit? We do know the 400N burner is
defunct; is the mission now riding on whether the arcjet can be brought online? 

> I'm sure you meant perigee all places above....

Attention all AMSAT-BB members: Maggie said apogee when she meant perigee,
several times. <giggle> 

> > Peter is right that the bird is still teaching us things. Wouldn't it be
> > nice if we knew what she was teaching *before* we actually learned? :-)
> Now Maggie, here we disagree.  Part of the great thing about learning..and
> teaching is the mystery of things until the light comes on and then the
> great satisfaction of understanding and of having helped in that process.
> What would be really great is if we didn't have to learn this particular
> lesson.

Oh, I'm a great worshipper at tha altar of "A-ha!" the Goddess of Epiphany. Just
sometimes I'd like to know what *subject* we're studying...I don't have to peek
ahead to read "Answers to Selected Exercises" in the back of the text, I just
wanna know what the *title* of the textbook is sometimes. :-) 

73 de Maggie K3XS 
AMSAT-NA Area Coordinator 

-----/___.   _)   Margaret Stephanie Leber    / "The art of progress  /
----/(, /|  /| http://voicenet.com/~maggie   / consists of preserving/
---/   / | / |  _   _   _    `  _AOPA 925383/ order amid change and /
--/ ) /  |/  |_(_(_(_/_(_/__(__(/_  FN20hd / change amid order."   /
-/ (_/   '  K3XS  .-/ .-/    ARRL 39280   /___ --A.N.Whitehead ___/
/____ICQ 7161096_(_/_(_/__AMSAT 32844____/ <maggie@voicenet.com>
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