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Message Subject are these really Alien Probes ?
Poster Handle Anonymous Coward
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Once we had a preliminary orbit, we found that the object would pass
within about 0.003 AU of Earth in early December! We were immediately
suspicious that the object might be manmade. On November 8, I already
suggested to Brian Marsden that perhaps it might be a Saturn IVB stage,
but it was only a wild guess at trying to explain the Earth-like orbit.
The disconcerting thing is that an object in such an orbit would not last
very long - how could it be natural? One possibility we discused was tht
it might be a recently escaped Earth-Sun trojan asteroid. I soon noted
that the archive of last known state vectors for Apollo hardware was not
very helpful in determining where they might be now. Soon, the orbit was
good enough to say with some precision where it had been over the last 30
years and it. Marsden integrated the orbit backwards, hoping to improve
the predictions for an attempt to observe 1991 VG with radar by linking it
to a manmade spacecraft. He found that it had been in the vicinity of
Earth last in about 1973 or 1974, but only got within about 0.07AU. That
suggested the Helios A spacecraft booster, a Centaur upper stage.
Jonathan McDowell contacted General Dynamics and found out that that
booster was put back into a Geocentric orbit after dumping the Helios
Spacecraft.

[link to www.satobs.org]
 
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