Global Positioning System or better known as GPS is a tool that uses satellites to pinpoint your exact position at any time of the day or night. This makes it possible for you to know where you are regardless of where you may be. A lot of individuals rely on this service to find their loved ones who have gone missing. There are a lot of other individuals who rely on this technology to know how to get to somewhere they have never been before without having to use a map or a guide. If you happen to be in the industry of aerial photography and would like to know more about how this system works, then read on.
The NGS works along with the geostationary operational modules. These are small earth-orbiting satellites that operate in a fixed orbit above the earth. Once an area is selected, the geostationary weather satellites will automatically align themselves to that particular area. From here, the information that is being collected on the ground will determine the areas that a plane must fly over to get to another location.
In order for the NGS to determine these areas, it uses a number of different data sources including Global Positioning System, radio emissions, Terrain Maps, and Global Viewing Infrared Imagery. Global Viewing Infrared Imagery (GUI) consists of the maps and data that are collected by the operational environmental satellites as well as the operational geostationary satellites. This imagery is important when it comes to monitoring space weather conditions because it can determine the intensity and duration of the solar activity. A lot of the imagery also has information on cloud coverage, cloud type, snow cover, rainfall, ice cap, ice melt and much more. This information is crucial when it comes to monitoring weather patterns, pollution levels and even weather related accidents on the ground.
When it comes to the operational environment of the GSA, there is a need for both data and software that can be accessed rapidly. For this reason, the operational environmental satellites are split up into two distinct groups. There is the full disk imaging group which targets regions that are experiencing geostationary storms, while the low-resolution imaging group is targeted at observing the Earth as a whole. The GSA has several budget constraints so all the operational groups are required to comply with a specified budget.
The first operational group is made up of the GSA goes-n series and the GSA orbit series. The GSA goes-n series is specifically designed for low-resolution imaging while the GSA orbit series are designed for higher resolution imaging purposes. Both the go-a series and orbit series are designed to operate in geostationary orbit. The GSA fully operational satellites are designed to operate in the lower atmosphere of Earth, while the low-resolution satellites are designed to operate in the geostationary orbit. Although the operational status of the geostationary satellites was discussed at length, I will not discuss the status of the low-resolution or full sized satellites.
If you wish to be in the know about the operational conditions of the different satellites of the GSA, there is a great deal of information on the internet that will be quite helpful. For example, all the operational status reports that the agency issues have a great deal of detail about the status of each of the orbiting satellites. The GSA has identified eight specific satellites that they use to operate the Earth-orbit transit system. Four of the eight satellites are in operation presently while another four are either retrofitted or still under construction. Of course, it is possible for an operator to modify one or more of the equatorial plane satellites but modifying one of the secondary satellites is not as easy as it is for retrofitted satellites.