"Pseudo-MPEC" for 1964-040B = NORAD 00837 = Vela 2B

Created 2019 Apr 12 21:05:15 UT using Find_Orb

Click here for an explanation of pseudo-MPECs

TLEs are available for this object, and for other artificial satellites listed on these pages.

This object was first found by the Zwicky Transient Facility on 2018 August 30, designated as ZTF00XY, with four observations over 73 minutes. It was enough to make me suspect it might be an artsat, but not enough to prove it, much less say anything about its orbit.

On 2018 September 18, the Catalina Sky Survey found an object that appeared to be a likely artsat. Follow-up confirmed this, and Marco Micheli linked the new data back to the ZTF observations.

I (Bill Gray) then tried to identify the object. There are not many objects in orbits with a period of 6000 minutes. Running the orbit back to the launch date of 1964-040B = Vela 2B on 1964 July 17 got an inclination of 40.9 degrees and perigee height above ground 95518 km. (Here's a graph of inclination and perigee height from launch in 1964 to a bit into the future.) The catalogued initial inclination is 40.7 degrees, perigee 94374 km, orbital period 6002.73 minutes. I'm calling it a match.

More recently, ZTF again found the object on 2019 April 12. The new data led to a greatly improved orbit, one in which the effects of solar radiation pressure could be considered. As a result, I was able to find two previous instances where the object had been imaged, from (G96) Mount Lemmon in 2016 and from (950) La Palma in 2015.

This also enabled me to compute TLEs to compare with historical TLEs provided by Jonathan McDowell (originally from a collection by Allen Thomson, possibly retyped from TLEs distributed on paper.) Following is a TLE computed for 1969 July 2 using the data below, followed by the corresponding TLE from Jonathan. The match is quite good.

1964-040B = NORAD 00837 = Vela 2B
1 00837U 64040B   69182.99954041  .00000000  00000-0  00000-0 0  4679
2 00837 038.6942 177.0341 3422937 049.8065 279.7812 00.23998496    03

1 00837U          69183.00000000  .00000000                       260
2 00837  38.0798 176.5501 3530009  49.2791 282.2411  0.23981390  4337

 
 Astrometry: 
     EURV027 .C2015 08 15.06755 21 38 33.9  +18 52 31           x22.1 Rq     950
     EURV027 .C2015 08 15.06892 21 38 33.5  +18 54 21           x22.5 Rq     950
     EURV027 .C2015 08 15.07030 21 38 32.9  +18 56 18           x22.0 Rq     950
     EURV027 .C2015 08 15.07167 21 38 32.5  +18 58 08           x22.4 Rq     950
     XUB9FF0  C2016 10 30.09964 21 37 04.74 +26 03 22.6         x      qNEOCPG96
     XUB9FF0  C2016 10 30.10393 21 37 07.22 +26 06 07.7         x19.8 VqNEOCPG96
     XUB9FF0  C2016 10 30.11260 21 37 12.17 +26 11 37.6         x19.1 VqNEOCPG96
     XUB9FF0  C2016 10 30.13276 21 37 24.04 +26 23 52.2         x19.6 VqNEOCPG96
     XUB9FF0  C2016 10 30.13362 21 37 24.62 +26 24 21.9         x      qNEOCPG96
     XUB9FF0  C2016 10 30.13403 21 37 24.91 +26 24 36.1         x19.8 VqNEOCPG96
     ZTF00XY  C2018 08 30.21916 17 22 55.61 +23 56 06.7                UNEOCPI41
     ZTF00XY  C2018 08 30.21951 17 23 02.66 +23 56 31.6                UNEOCPI41
     ZTF00XY  C2018 08 30.26983 17 38 46.94 +24 40 59.7          15.94RUNEOCPI41
     ZTF00XY  C2018 08 30.27017 17 38 53.04 +24 41 14.0          15.94RUNEOCPI41
     ZS09798  C2018 09 18.18549 21 58 48.21 +22 24 04.8          16.9 GVNEOCP703
     ZS09798  C2018 09 18.19079 21 58 59.85 +22 22 31.7          16.8 GVNEOCP703
     ZS09798  C2018 09 18.19610 21 59 11.40 +22 20 55.0          17.0 GVNEOCP703
     ZS09798  C2018 09 18.29370 22 02 44.93 +21 42 26.1          17.5 GVNEOCPI52
     ZS09798  C2018 09 18.29383 22 02 45.22 +21 42 22.6          17.4 GVNEOCPI52
     ZS09798  C2018 09 18.29396 22 02 45.51 +21 42 18.8          17.5 GVNEOCPI52
     ZS09798  C2018 09 18.29408 22 02 45.81 +21 42 14.9          17.5 GVNEOCPI52
     ZS09798 KC2018 09 18!M#nH)%j4btX!%1[Ib\tHOFsS@=PVAstrometrywQredacted;^,850
     ZS09798 KC2018 09 18]YvqAp)vP;XyWnM%DMSsqV)nbgHbM,u$WpNam$%W3s*8qWkq]Bn6850
     ZS09798 KC2018 09 18Vi_r=EmA=oc0N?5+R/6kZGclick6R_/NS1hereec$5qI\l%ybi0j850
     ZS09798 KC2018 09 18.yu;be,C3vOL_#%pBBKWB#9i)8QLuZVpu6[;#2jOqH.BDPmE-iFX850
     ZS09798 KC2018 09 18+8c1o^lK/AiEW_Hi)w:Q_\P5)uBMQB+74IH)anTp6xoG]=jfn*rS850
     ZS09798 KC2018 09 18AHBJwdwN`]?O`hXG\forgLe3s+=hSH:aC)G9HyB.6a]v)pCf]alO850
     ZS09798 KC2018 09 18@$Z]Fg_aN(#X*q)mh?.;8v^X3$5)D9=(9explanation*gYJXkTO850
     ZTF02yY  C2019 04 12.39201517 37 40.93 +32 07 55.7    ~4CKQ 18.14gUNEOCPI41
     ZTF02yY  C2019 04 12.39236417 37 46.23 +32 08 11.7    ~4CKQ 18.14gUNEOCPI41
     ZTF02yY  C2019 04 12.40517017 40 48.62 +32 17 05.0    ~4CKQ 16.87RUNEOCPI41
     ZTF02yY  C2019 04 12.40551717 40 53.39 +32 17 18.4    ~4CKQ 16.87RUNEOCPI41
     ZTF02yY  C2019 04 12.42640017 45 35.83 +32 29 41.1    ~4CKQ 15.96RUNEOCPI41
     ZTF02yY  C2019 04 12.42674817 45 40.43 +32 29 53.0    ~4CKQ 15.96RUNEOCPI41

Station data:
(703) Catalina Sky Survey  (N32.417006 W110.732640)  US/Arizona.  Observer G.
   J. Leonard. Measurers B. M. Africano, E. J. Christensen, G. A. Farneth, D.
   C. Fuls, A. R. Gibbs, A. D. Grauer, H. Groeller, J. A. Johnson, R. A.
   Kowalski, S. M. Larson, G. J. Leonard, R. L. Seaman, F. C. Shelly. 0.68-m
   Schmidt + 10K CCD.
(850) Cordell-Lorenz Observatory, Sewanee  (N35.204094 W85.919800)
   US/Tennessee. 0.3-m Schmidt-Cassegrain.
(950) La Palma  (N28.760222 W17.882400)  Canary Islands (Spain).
(G96) Mt. Lemmon Survey  (N32.442754 W110.788720)  US/Arizona.  Observer G.
   J. Leonard. Measurers B. M. Africano, E. J. Christensen, G. A. Farneth, D.
   C. Fuls, A. R. Gibbs, A. D. Grauer, H. Groeller, R. A. Kowalski, S. M.
   Larson, G. J. Leonard, T. A. Pruyne, R. L. Seaman, F. C. Shelly. 1.5-m
   reflector + 10K CCD.
(I41) Palomar Mountain--ZTF  (N33.357340 W116.859780)  US/California.
   Observer A. U. Tomatic. Measurers H.-W. Lin, F. J. Masci, D. Streaks,
   Q.-Z. Ye.
(I52) Steward Observatory, Mt. Lemmon Station  (N32.442547 W110.788920)
   US/Arizona.  Observers T. A. Pruyne, B. M. Africano, E. J. Christensen, G.
   A. Farneth, D. C. Fuls, A. R. Gibbs, A. D. Grauer, H. Groeller, R. E.
   Hill, J. A. Johnson, R. A. Kowalski, S. M. Larson, G. J. Leonard, R. G.
   Matheny, R. L. Seaman, F. C. Shelly. 1.0-m reflector + CCD.

Orbital elements:  1964-040B = NORAD 00837 = Vela 2B
   Perigee 2019 Mar 30.344503 +/- 4.17e-5 TT =  8:16:05 (JD 2458572.844503)
Epoch 2019 Apr  1.0 TT; AMR 0.0082511 +/- 0.000342 m2/kg     Gray
M 143.05568769 +/- 0.0036           (J2000 equator)
n  86.41252412 +/- 2.7e-6           Peri.  308.27705 +/- 0.0011
a109366.852 +/- 0.00228             Node   182.88212 +/- 0.00043
e   0.7092796 +/- 9.06e-6           Incl.   32.81966 +/- 0.00006
P5999.02m/4.166d           H 30.8   G  0.15   U  4.3
q 31795.1676 +/- 0.991    Q 186938.536 +/- 0.989
24 of 34 observations 2018 Aug. 30-2019 Apr. 12; mean residual 1".025
Residuals in arcseconds: 
150815 950( 182-  384-)   180830 I41 1.53+ .143+    180918 850 .911+ .151+
150815 950( 181-  388-)   180830 I41 2.80+ .597+    180918 850 .474+ 9.8m+
150815 950( 182-  385-)   180918 703 .047- .250+    180918 850 2.37- .414+
150815 950( 181-  388-)   180918 703 .135- .616+    180918 850 .810- .119-
161030 G96(76.8- 55.3-)   180918 703 .352- .455+    190412 I41 1.27- .177-
161030 G96(76.1- 56.0-)   180918 I52 .565+ .180-    190412 I41 1.53+ .407+
161030 G96(75.8- 55.5-)   180918 I52 .325+ .057+    190412 I41 .552- .715-
161030 G96(76.9- 56.0-)   180918 I52 .083+ 3.7m-    190412 I41 1.50- .959-
161030 G96(76.3- 56.8-)   180918 I52 .308+ .451-    190412 I41 .842+ .350-
161030 G96(75.9- 57.0-)   180918 850 .554+ 1.37-    190412 I41 1.42+ .477+
180830 I41 2.62- 1.29-    180918 850 1.01- .407+
180830 I41 2.10- .093+    180918 850 1.47+ 1.06-

Ephemerides (geocentric):
Date (UTC) HH   RA              Dec         delta  elong  mag " sig PA
---- -- -- --  -------------   -----------  ------ -----  --- ---- ---
2019 04 12 00  13 49 35.999   +15 16 22.43   49676 155.2 14.6 43.5  61
2019 04 12 01  14 30 08.161   +20 25 09.90   56443 146.4 15.1 31.4  64
2019 04 12 02  15 03 48.037   +24 02 09.09   63190 138.8 15.6 23.1  68
2019 04 12 03  15 32 20.712   +26 36 38.95   69781 132.5 16.0 17.3  72
2019 04 12 04  15 56 57.149   +28 28 04.00   76156 127.2 16.3 13.1  75
2019 04 12 05  16 18 27.411   +29 49 10.27   82289 122.6 16.6 10.0  79
2019 04 12 06  16 37 28.060   +30 48 28.76   88173 118.6 16.9 7.68  83
2019 04 12 07  16 54 26.522   +31 31 47.34   93809 115.1 17.1 5.88  87
2019 04 12 08  17 09 43.826   +32 03 07.96   99206 112.0 17.3 4.47  92
2019 04 12 09  17 23 36.391   +32 25 22.43  104370 109.2 17.5 3.35  98
2019 04 12 10  17 36 17.233   +32 40 35.07  109311 106.7 17.7 2.46 106
2019 04 12 11  17 47 56.813   +32 50 17.42  114039 104.4 17.9 1.77 117
2019 04 12 12  17 58 43.638   +32 55 37.96  118562 102.2 18.0 1.27 134
2019 04 12 13  18 08 44.697   +32 57 28.62  122889 100.3 18.2 .981 159
2019 04 12 14  18 18 05.793   +32 56 29.30  127028  98.4 18.3 .934   7
2019 04 12 15  18 26 51.783   +32 53 11.00  130987  96.7 18.5 1.06  30
2019 04 12 16  18 35 06.766   +32 47 58.04  134771  95.0 18.6 1.26  44
2019 04 12 17  18 42 54.228   +32 41 09.69  138388  93.5 18.7 1.47  54
2019 04 12 18  18 50 17.153   +32 33 01.33  141843  92.0 18.8 1.67  60
2019 04 12 19  18 57 18.112   +32 23 45.34  145141  90.6 18.9 1.85  65
2019 04 12 20  19 03 59.335   +32 13 31.70  148288  89.3 19.0 2.01  68
2019 04 12 21  19 10 22.766   +32 02 28.57  151287  88.0 19.1 2.16  71
2019 04 12 22  19 16 30.108   +31 50 42.59  154143  86.8 19.2 2.28  73
2019 04 12 23  19 22 22.861   +31 38 19.20  156860  85.6 19.3 2.40  75
2019 04 13 00  19 28 02.355   +31 25 22.88  159441  84.4 19.4 2.49  77
2019 04 13 01  19 33 29.770   +31 11 57.32  161889  83.3 19.5 2.58  78
2019 04 13 02  19 38 46.161   +30 58 05.54  164208  82.3 19.5 2.65  80
2019 04 13 03  19 43 52.476   +30 43 50.05  166399  81.2 19.6 2.71  81
2019 04 13 04  19 48 49.565   +30 29 12.88  168466  80.2 19.7 2.76  82
2019 04 13 05  19 53 38.201   +30 14 15.70  170411  79.2 19.8 2.81  83
2019 04 13 06  19 58 19.083   +29 58 59.85  172236  78.3 19.8 2.84  84
2019 04 13 07  20 02 52.849   +29 43 26.41  173942  77.3 19.9 2.87  84
2019 04 13 08  20 07 20.081   +29 27 36.22  175532  76.4 20.0 2.89  85
2019 04 13 09  20 11 41.317   +29 11 29.91  177008  75.5 20.1 2.91  86
2019 04 13 10  20 15 57.049   +28 55 07.95  178370  74.6 20.1 2.92  86
2019 04 13 11  20 20 07.736   +28 38 30.65  179621  73.7 20.2 2.92  87
2019 04 13 12  20 24 13.802   +28 21 38.17  180760  72.8 20.2 2.92  87
2019 04 13 13  20 28 15.643   +28 04 30.57  181790  72.0 20.3 2.91  88
2019 04 13 14  20 32 13.629   +27 47 07.77  182712  71.1 20.4 2.90  88
2019 04 13 15  20 36 08.111   +27 29 29.61  183525  70.3 20.4 2.88  89
2019 04 13 16  20 39 59.417   +27 11 35.81  184232  69.5 20.5 2.86  89
2019 04 13 17  20 43 47.860   +26 53 26.02  184832  68.6 20.5 2.84  89
2019 04 13 18  20 47 33.737   +26 34 59.80  185327  67.8 20.6 2.81  90
2019 04 13 19  20 51 17.334   +26 16 16.61  185716  67.0 20.7 2.78  90
2019 04 13 20  20 54 58.925   +25 57 15.83  186000  66.2 20.7 2.74  90
2019 04 13 21  20 58 38.775   +25 37 56.78  186180  65.4 20.8 2.70  90
2019 04 13 22  21 02 17.141   +25 18 18.67  186254  64.6 20.8 2.65  90
2019 04 13 23  21 05 54.276   +24 58 20.62  186225  63.8 20.9 2.60  90
2019 04 14 00  21 09 30.426   +24 38 01.69  186091  63.0 20.9 2.55  90
2019 04 14 01  21 13 05.836   +24 17 20.82  185852  62.2 21.0 2.49  90
2019 04 14 02  21 16 40.749   +23 56 16.86  185509  61.4 21.0 2.43  90
2019 04 14 03  21 20 15.406   +23 34 48.56  185060  60.6 21.1 2.37  90
2019 04 14 04  21 23 50.052   +23 12 54.55  184506  59.8 21?? 2.29  90
2019 04 14 05  21 27 24.934   +22 50 33.35  183846  59.0 21?? 2.22  89
2019 04 14 06  21 31 00.301   +22 27 43.34  183079  58.1 21?? 2.14  89
2019 04 14 07  21 34 36.412   +22 04 22.76  182205  57.3 21?? 2.05  88
2019 04 14 08  21 38 13.530   +21 40 29.70  181224  56.5 21?? 1.96  87
2019 04 14 09  21 41 51.930   +21 16 02.07  180133  55.7 21?? 1.87  86
2019 04 14 10  21 45 31.898   +20 50 57.59  178932  54.8 21?? 1.77  85
2019 04 14 11  21 49 13.732   +20 25 13.78  177620  53.9 21?? 1.67  83