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Originally posted by albertfothergill
The Nasa shuttle footage of a 12 mile long antenna/satellite which showed phenomena, (we all seen that right), has it disappeared?
The tethered satellite, TSS-1R (23805/96012B), was lost around 0130 UTC, February 27, 1996, whilst nearing full deploy during the STS-75 shuttle mission. This satellite was to have been flown on the end of a 20 km long tether in order to investigate tether electrodynamics, orbital adjustment via a tether and the upper atmosphere. After separation from the shuttle, the satellite with tether still attached was left in a 28.5 degree, 400 by 320 km orbit.
The satellite and tether re-entered March 19, 1996 at about 2312 UTC, somewhere over the NW Africa/SE Asia region.
Nondestructive testing concluded that the tether failure was a result of excessive arching between the tether and the ambient environment.
Most reports indicated that the tether was hanging below the main satellite (roughly along the Earth radius vector, in a gravity gradient stabilized manner). Some have mentioned an apparent gentle curving of the tether along with a small kink or twist at the end furthest from the main satellite body, possibly where the free end has coiled in the manner of a telephone cable (this appears to be along the velocity vector). Others have commented on the surprising brightness of the tether - one report placed it at about mag. +3, though brightness estimates of such an unusual (in effect one dimensional) object are hard to make. It seems to compare favorably with the SEDS tether of recent years despite it being much narrower; only 2.54 mm.