Space Products & Innovation
Governance, Education, and Infrastructure
The Cospas-SarSat program, another international partnership, relies on satellite communications to provide search and rescue services. The program uses an international network of receivers and transmitters aboard several satellites.
In the hours and days after a natural disaster occurs, satellite communications serve a vital role in coordinating humanitarian response when terrestrial communications systems are overwhelmed with heavy call traffic or rendered inactive due to damage.
Space-enabled applications and technologies are a critical part of the global capacity for natural disaster mitigation and management. The Pacific Ocean Tsunami Warning System relies on satellite links as a critical part of the infrastructure that provides warning of potentially devastating tsunamis.
Remote sensing satellites provide data to assess the scope and impact of disasters that have occurred. The information also enables planning for the mitigation of events that may occur. The International Charter on Space and Major Disasters provides a means for relief agencies to request satellite imagery of an area affected by a disaster.
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.
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.
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.
One of the key challenges in a flood involves getting timely and accurate information regarding flood-affected areas. Satellite imagery can mitigate the magnitude of flood damage by providing response teams with an overall image of the flooded area.
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.
Satellite communications enable a growing number of distance learning and tele-education programs. In 2007, the Brazilian education network, enabled by Hughes Network Systems’ HughesNet, completed rollout in the state of Amazonas.