Visualizing All of Earth’s Satellites: Who Owns Our Orbit? #infographic

 

Visualizing All of Earth’s Satellites: Who Owns Our Orbit? #infographic

For decades , human beings have looked to space and the stars for answers. Curiosity is more than metaphysical, coupled with the ability here on Earth to solve problems.

Today, there are seemingly endless benefits and uses of space technology. For example, for anything from internet connectivity and precision farming, to border protection and archaeological studies, satellites are becoming critical.

Humans have used space for navigation for a long time. We now use satellites for GPS, navigation, and various other applications, while sailors once relied on the stars.

For commercial purposes, over half of the Earth's operational satellites are deployed. Around 61 percent of these, including everything from satellite TV and Internet of Things ( IoT) access to the global Internet, include communications.

In addition to communications, 27% of commercial Earth Observation (EO) satellites have been deployed, including environmental monitoring and border control.

However, commercial satellites can serve multiple purposes. A satellite may be 'tasked' for one week to photograph a disputed boundary. The reclamation of a mining site or even the aftermath of a natural disaster may be tracked later on.

Created by Elon Musk, SpaceX is not only a disruptive launch provider (saving NASA millions) for International Space Station missions. It's the biggest commercial satellite operator on the world, too.

With 358 satellites launched in April, SpaceX's mission is to increase navigation capabilities and supply the space-based internet to the world.

Although the corporation operated 22% of the world's operational satellites as of April, from August to September 2020, it proceeded to launch an additional 175 satellites in the period of one month.

Cubesats, microsats, nanosats, and more, tiny satellites are all about the modern space race.

Planet Labs now has more than 150 satellites in service with its flock of small EO satellites, or 'doves' (in April 2020, however, the number exceeded 250, as per the above data).

Even Amazon is making plans for space. In July 2020, the FCC issued permission to launch and run an internet constellation of 3,236 satellites for Jeff Bezos' tech empire.

It may not be shocking that the U.S., China , and Russia dominate the list of operating satellite countries.

The space race was piloted by the U.S. and Russia (then the USSR) in the 1950s and 1960s. In the top three of the existing satellite operators, both nations are found, with the U.S. running almost half of all satellites-1,308 as of April 2020.

With approximately 356 satellites, China trails the United States. Russia has 167 satellites in service, taking third place, and the UK comes in close to fourth with 130 satellites.

Visualizing All of Earth’s Satellites: Who Owns Our Orbit? #infographic

infographic by: www.visualcapitalist.com

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