Josh-Daniel S. Davis (joshdavis) wrote,
Josh-Daniel S. Davis

Satellite Perspective

A passenger jet cruises along at roughly 12 km. At the sale of the image below, it is less than one pixel above the earth. It cannot even be drawn.

The ISS is 400km above the earth, which is far, but only compared to ground based things.

The Hubble telescope orbits earth at about 600km. This puts it above most of the space junk.

Just how far away are the GPS satellites? About 20,200 kilometers (12,500 miles). This is why with only 32 of them, you can still often "see" 10 or more at any given time. Just past those at 36,000km are the WAAS satellites which provide improved GPS accuracy through local area updates beamed from the ground.

So what about the Moon? The Moon is about 385,000 kilometers from Earth, nearly twenty times further than the GPS satellites. It doesn't fit on this picture.

Tags: gps, height, satellite
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