Tuesday, April 04, 2006

What are all those geosynchronous satellites for?

We can use the Union of Concerned Scientists satellite database to learn where and what those satellites are for. Of the about 811 satellites in orbit around the earth, 348 are in geosynchronous orbits, stationed on purpose above a particular longitude along the equator. Almost all are used for communications, a few for military applications. Some for surveillance, reconnaissance or early warning.

The sections of earth with the highest numbers of satellites tend to be the most populous. (Click on the chart for a bigger picture) A bunch are stationed at longitudes to serve the United States (105W) and South America (55W and 45W), some over Europe (15E) and the United Kingdom (0), some over the Far East (105E) and a few over Australia (140E). There are satellites at almost every longitude.

tags: , , ,

No comments: