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Searching For Downed Aircraft With Satellite Imagery

In September 2007, a search-and-rescue mission for missing aviator Steve Fossett was aided by volunteers who never left their homes. Instead of combing forests and mountains, these searchers scanned digital satellite images provided by the commercial remote sensing firms GeoEye and DigitalGlobe for signs of Fossett’s downed plane.

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Students Get GPS Phones

In response to the tragic events at Virginia Tech in the spring of 2007, several colleges have begun distributing GPS phones with tracking devices to students.

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You Can Run, But Hiding…

Police use GPS technology in a number of novel applications. Embedded GPS chips are replacing exploding dye packs as a more efficient way to foil bank robbers in some U.S. cities. The practice allows officials to track stolen money with unprecedented precision.

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Shuttle Stress Analyzers Relieve Infrastructure Strain

Several product lines of fiber optic-based stress and strain analyzers have been created from a NASA technology spinoff developed to monitor structural strain on the Space Shuttle. The technology is unique because it can analyze stress and strain on components without requiring the disassembly of the Space Shuttle.

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Enhancing Medical Education with Satellite Broadband

The VideoSat for Distance Learning program leverages satellite broadband and broadcast capabilities to provide continuing medical education. The new system, under development in 2008 by ESA and industry partners, aims to improve upon previous satellite-based distance learning systems by innovative use of video simulation technology supported by a user-friendly set-top box.

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Pinpointing Pollution Prior to Olympics

Beijing Olympic organizers used remote sensing data from a U.S. satellite to analyze aerosol levels in and around Beijing before the games. The data enabled researchers to pinpoint reasons for the pollution and suggest ways to reduce it.

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Tagging Disaster Areas in Satellite Imagery

Scandicraft, a Norwegian unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) service provider, has developed a system that “geotags,” or marks the physical location of, aerial images from a disaster area and uploads the images via satellite link within minutes.

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