Space Products & Innovation


Ridesharing’s Dependence on Satellite Geolocation

Ride-sharing services are an increasingly popular form of urban transportation that depends on geolocation services provided by satellites. Companies such as Uber and Lyft offer smartphone applications that allow a prospective rider to use the smartphone’s satellite navigation chip to identify the location at which the rider wishes to be picked up.

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Lessons Learned During Satellite-building Helps Detect Fraud

Satellite simulation software and banking fraud prevention software—one became more robust and accurate thanks to the experience garnered from the other. Feedzai is a company that took its expertise in developing ESA satellite mission simulation software for space and applied it to the detection of fraudulent activities on Earth. The particular satellite mission software created by Feedzai’s founders simulates a complex “software universe” that was originally developed as a solution to train operators on satellites and systems while in development.

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Lawyers use Space Assets to Enforce the Law

As space activities and businesses using space assets grow, entrepreneurs are sensing opportunities in a growing space market. Mixing terrestrial legal expertise with Earth observation technologies, some lawyers are beginning to understand the benefits of space assets in cases that might have otherwise been difficult to win. Legal companies such as Air & Space Evidence are offering specialized space-centric services to clients who might need them. The company uses satellite imagery as part of its toolkit to combat fraud, find and monitor illegal activities, verify environmental claims, and conduct other activities.

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Satellite Radar Helps UK police in critical searches

Whether using multispectral imagery from satellite imagery providers such as DigitalGlobe, or synthetic aperture radar (SAR) products from satellites such as the German Aerospace Center’s (DLR) TerraSAR-X, law enforcement agencies in the United Kingdom and other countries are learning how crime-related investigations can benefit from satellite assistance. The constabulary is using SAR and imagery to reduce costs and time associated with conducting searches for hidden graves in urban locations.

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Conversations of Space Robots and Explorers in Social Media

Social media and space agency public relations worked together to bring awareness of space program activities by endowing personality to robots flying through space. “Namaste, @MarsOrbiter!” displayed a playful tenor in one of the first friendly greetings given to India’s Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) satellite from NASA’s ground-hugging Mars Curiosity rover.

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Understanding Droughts and Floods through GRACE

Water—either too much or not enough of it—can pose very different challenges to residents of certain regions in the world. There are satellites that measure the amount of water within the soil of the region and give a better idea if the observed ground is prime for flooding or drought.

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Satellites Help Find Treasured Trash

Satellite imagery continues to be used in surprising ways. One startup, Terra Recovery, is using satellite remote sensing technology in tandem with flying drones to find mining opportunities in the United Kingdom and North America.

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European Radar Satellite Helps with California Quake

The August 2014 earthquake in Napa Valley, California prompted organizations from very different backgrounds to provide space-sourced data to the affected communities. The European Space Agency (ESA), the United States Geological Survey (USGS), and Google all provided information showing the aftermath of the 6.0 magnitude earthquake.

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Spying Me, Spying You – Satellite Imagery on a Phone

There was a time when obtaining high-resolution imagery from satellite sources required a security clearance and a secure facility. Today, high-resolution imagery is an accessible, inexpensive, and portable reality due to companies such as Orbit Logic, which released smartphone software application SpyMeSat to the public in late 2013.

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