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National UFO Reporting Center
Sighting Report
Occurred : 7/7/1999 23:15 (Entered as : 07/07/99 2315)
Reported: 7/9/1999 09:33
Posted: 3/21/2003
Location: Des Moines, IA
Shape: Light
Duration:15 seconds
((NUFORC Note: This report is strongly suggestive to us of a satellite in polar orbit. The observer apparently is not familiar with satellites that have polar orbits.))

What looked like a star was moving to the north for a duration of 15 seconds before being blocked out by some high clouds.

My name is ((name deleted)) and at approx. 2315 on 7-7-99 while I and a co-worker were standing in the parking lot of Mercy Franklin Hospital in Des Moines, Iowa, I was watching the night sky. The sky was mostly clear with the temperature in the mid 70's. I was looking to the west and observed a passenger jet making a low level approach towards the south to the Des Moines International Airport. Shortly after the plane passed I observed what looked like a white star higher in the sky. It was at this time that I also noticed that the star was moving to the north. I pointed out the object to my co-worker and he stated that it was probably a satellite. I continued to watch the object until it was blocked out by some high light clouds. As the clouds passed by I was unable to pick up the moving object again. Having observed stars and a planet that night I noted that the object did not twinkle like the other stars and it did not have flashing lights on it like aircraft would have. I was unaware that we would have satellites going from south to north and not in a geocentric orbit. The Big Dipper constellation was visable and the object passed just under this constellation as it passed to the north. I work as a security officer for ((facility deleted)) in Des Moines, Iowa. I have a B.S. degree in Wildlife Biology from Michigan State University and a couple years of Post Graduate work in Wildlife Management from Frostburg State College in Frostburg, Maryland.