Mission location question

When the mission is over, will we have information about exactly where on earth the satellite passed over for the time period when the data was collected?

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Yes, we append Latitude, Longitude, Altitude data to every row of your space dataset. Thank you for the great question!

Thanks! I have a followup question. I am trying to insert the orbital elements for the satellite we are using into a planetarium simulator (Starry Night Pro.) Then I can show the satellite’s position in approximate real time with the simulator.

Here is the interface from Starry Night to add an earth orbiting satellite:

The problem is the last entry in the Starry Night interface. The mean anomaly isn’t listed in the Wolfram Alpha site. how do I get it?

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Starry Night software looks sharp! The Norad name and number of the satellite that we are going to run our missions on this round is ‘LEMUR 2 GREENBERG’ Norad # 42837 . It looks like you could input this in the Artificial Satellite field?

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It looks like the Mean Anomaly for our mission satellite '‘LEMUR 2 GREENBERG’ is: 5:12:01.1 radians or in degrees 286.47889

For any Python programming fans, here is example code using the fun library pyephem:

Setup Python Environement:

  sudo apt-get install python
  sudo apt-get install python-dev
  sudo apt-get install python-pip
  pip install pyephem

Documentation for the PyEphem library:


import ephem
import datetime


Satellite TLE info for Spire constellation found here:

  This TLE was updated in this code 5/3/2018 .. should be updated if older than about 2 weeks

line1 = "1 42837U 17042N   18123.16511415  .00000459  00000-0  51343-4 0  9995";
line2 = "2 42837  97.6010  27.4336 0013199 354.9079   5.2003 14.91424684 43644";

tle_rec = ephem.readtle(name, line1, line2);

# Where is the satellite now
print ("Latitude (+N): ",tle_rec.sublat);
print ("Longitude (+E): ",tle_rec.sublong);
print ("Elevation (m): ",tle_rec.elevation);

# _M — Mean anomaly from perigee at epoch (°)
print ("Mean Anomaly (°): ",tle_rec._M);
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That worked great! I was able to paste the TLE directly into Starry Night’s interface and it accepted it. The python program looks fun-- will be trying it out.

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So glad that worked!

The python pyEphem is such a cool library … interested if you can get it working!