Geosynchronous Weather Satellite Coverage to Limb
Satellites have made weather forecasts much more accurate than they were
when your parents were little. They allow Meteorologists to track weather
systems from far out in the ocean where no one is, and they let us see the
BIG picture all at once. They do more than just give us a look at where the
clouds are, they can measure the temperature of the ground, the clouds, and
water. The satellite pictures you see on TV each night are usually from the GOES
8and GOES 9 spacecraft. GOES stands for Geostationary Operational
What does Geo-stationary mean ???
A Geo-stationary satellite is very very high... much higher than the Space
Shuttle goes when astronauts go into orbit. The Shuttle can go about 500
kilometers high. The GOES satellite is over 35,000 kilometers above the
Earth. At this height, it takes the satellite about 24 hours to go around
the Earth... but, since the Earth itself turns around once each 24 hours,
the satellite is always over the same spot! That's why we call it Geo (Earth)
Stationary (not moving)!
Satellites and Orbits:
by the Integrated Program Office Outreach Team.
An easy-to-use interactive, animated introduction to satellites and the
forces which determine orbits.
Grades 8 through 10.
Approximately 1.25 hours.
There are 3 main types of satellite pictures